Little Hayes celebrates successful Ofsted visit

January 31 2017

STAFF and families at a Fishponds nursery school are celebrating a successful Ofsted visit.

STAFF and families at a Fishponds nursery school are celebrating a successful Ofsted visit.

Her Majesty's Inspector Lorna Brackstone said that the quality of education at Little Hayes and Hillfields Early Years & Family Centre remained good.

In the first inspection since the nursery school was rated good in 2012, Little Hayes was found to have kept up standards at its sites in Frenchay Road and Symington Road and to be well prepared to open a new provision in Hillfields..

In a letter to headteacher Shirley Doveton, Ms Brackstone wrote: “Against a background of amalgamations, expansions and growing numbers, you, ably supported by your senior leaders and governors, have ensured that the effectiveness of the nursery provision has never been compromised. Your extremely strong commitment to nursery education, coupled with your expertise and dedication to the education and welfare of young children, firmly steers provision.

“Staff and governors mirror your passion and vision for the nursery in their day-to- day work.

Together, you form a strong team that is highly respected by the local community.”

Among the areas of work singled out for praise were:

Detailed support for children learning English as an additional language;

Improved opportunities to develop speaking and writing skills;

A rich choice of interesting activities;

A strong culture of safeguarding.

“ Parents trust the nursery to care for their children and appreciate the warm and welcoming environment. You and your staff take time to get to know your families well and the close relationships formed enable you to quickly spot any issues of concern,” Ms Brackstone said.

Partnership working with neighbouring schools and with external agencies was also highlighted. “Your ability to adapt and adjust key priorities to meet the changing needs of the school is a significant strength of your effective leadership,” the letter said.

The school's innovative approach in mixing two, three and four-year-olds together was judged a success, enabling older children to model positive behaviours and good learning habits to the younger ones.

The school's work on eradicating differences in achievement between girls and boys and providing additional help for summer-born children was praised, as were the efforts made to provide additional support for disadvantaged children, including summer school, trips and nourishment.

Mrs Doveton said everyone at the school was thrilled to have been judged to be maintaining a good quality of education at a time of expansion.

"The report really celebrates our community and our staff and recognises our successful partnership working as we move to the next stage in our development,"she said.

As well as early years education, Little Hayes offers a family support service across an area covering Stapleton, Begbrook, Oldbury Court, Fishponds, Hillfields, Downend, Staple Hill North, Eastville, and Lodge Causeway.

It also runs a childcare service at Eden House supporting women involved in the criminal justice system.

These services are inspected separately.

Free entitlement to Education of 15 hours per week is offered to eligible two, three and four year olds and there is opportunity to pay for additional top up hours.