‘Inadequate’ Writtle nursery upgraded to good

A Chelmsford nursery where two children left the premises without staff noticing last summer has been upgraded to “good” by an education watchdog after a new inspection.

Ofsted said management at Kiddi Caru Nursery in Writtle, had worked hard to improve its issues, which included ineffective staff deployment in the garden.

According to the report from the previous inspection, which took place in August 2021, this had resulted in two children managing to open a gate and leave the premises without staff noticing.

The nursery said it was “delighted” with the outcome of the new inspection, which took place in January 2022.

The nursery was downgraded from “outstanding” to “inadequate” after the August inspection.

A spokesperson from Kiddi Caru Day Nurseries Group said: “We are delighted with the inspection outcome which praised our dedicated and committed staff team. 

“Our highest priority, as always, is the safety, well-being and education of all children in our care and we continue to strive to extend and inspire children’s learning to the highest level so that the children in our care have the best possible outcomes.”

Actions set after the last inspection included ensuring staff were effectively deployed to supervise and meet the needs of the children at the nursery, according to the previous report.

A section read: “Following a recent event, children’s safety was compromised.

“Staff deployment in the garden is not effective.

“Consequently, staff previously failed to notice when two pre-school children managed to open an external gate and leave the premises unaccompanied.”

According to the new report, all the actions have now been met.

A section reads: “The management have worked hard to improve staff’s practice. 

“Actions set at the last inspection have been met and staff work very well together, within their own rooms and the nursery, as a team. 

“Staff have lots of opportunities to complete training to update their knowledge.”

Staff knew what to do in the event of safeguarding concerns and were regularly being asked questions by the managers to test their knowledge.

Additionally, risk assessments were now updated daily, with the new report describing them as “thorough”.

The new report also praised the school’s “ambitious” curriculum.

Babies were easily settling into their rooms and older children were happy to share their ideas with staff, the new report continued.

However, it did specify not all staff were confident enough to ensure teaching was consistently high across the nursery.

Children sometimes became distracted because activities took too long. 

Kiddi Caru Writtle achieved a “good” rating in all four categories, which are “the quality of education”, “behaviour and attitudes”, “personal development” and “leadership and management”.

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Charlie Ridler

Local Democracy Reporter