Balham/Tooting Nurseries: Grove Hall, Looking Glass and Abacus - opinions please

(4 Posts)
Noon2 Wed 12-Feb-14 16:04:56

Hi there,

I am sort of a newbie here and pregnant with my first child. I've been told to start looking at nurseries now for in a year's time... Only thing is I am new to this so don't really know what I am doing!

I have visited the above nurseries and also planning on looking at Eveline. Some of them have pretty bad Ofsted reports (averaging on 4) and my question was whether those reports should be taken with a pinch of salt?

For example, I really liked Looking Glass in Tooting. It appeared very secured and regulated, however the reports and reviews were pretty poor. Any experienced mums/dads here whose children attend this nursery?

Grove Hall is a bilingual nursery and I though it could be a good option as I am French. They seemed pretty laid back there and again Ofsted report was not good. Also looked at Stepping Stone next to Ravenstone school but Ofsted report is donkeys years old and I didn't really hit it off with the head of the nursery.

That leaves me with Abacus and Eveline which I have yet to visit but those seem to either be too expensive or the hours don't work for us....

Any advice on this would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance!
xx

Karenkong Fri 14-Feb-14 08:39:22

Hi there,

I'm visiting the nurseries as well and got some exp to share. The closest one to ours is the looking glass in tooting. to be honest, I didn't like it. The girl I talked to was very lovely, although some other girls are not very friendly, no smiles, rough attitude. The ofsted report went from 3 to 4 recently and after reading it in detail, it just proved my opinion: inconsistent behaviour in staff. And most importantly, the ofsted said that looking glass didn't meet the compulsary requirements set by childcare regulations. that is a deal breaker for me.

I will visit Eveline and Marmalade Caterpillar the end of this month, however, they don't have vacancy at the moment. I'm very likely to put my boy on the Eveline's waiting list.

Well my current choice is Baby Room in Balham. My boy will go there from next week, full time. Their ofsted is 3. After visiting, I think they are nice because it's a much smaller one with nice managers and staff. I went with my gut feeling and of course they happen to have a place immediately. Would love to keep in touch and update you should you like.

Best,

Karen

Noon2 Fri 14-Feb-14 10:13:28

Hi Karen,

Thanks very much for sharing your experience with this. I find it all quite overwhelming! I am visiting Eveline, Baby Room and Balham Day Nursery on Monday so hopefully I will have more of an idea then.

I really liked the indoor and outdoor space of Looking Glass and it seemed to be very secure.

I am sure I will love Eveline and Baby Room but they are really expensive so I was hoping I could find somewhere a bit more reasonable. Have you visited any other nursery around Tooting?

Would love to keep in touch so let's PM each other when we have an update perhaps?

Best,

LocalEditorWandsworth Fri 28-Feb-14 10:58:47

Hello, can I tempt you to come over to the local site for Wandsworth and ask again www.mumsnet.com/local/wandsworth ? You should hopefully get more replies.

My own twopence worth is that I've heard that there is a bit of trouble afoot at Grove Hall after its latest Ofsted report. I know people who used Looking Glass and were happy with it, although less so in the rooms for the older children were they felt there weren't enough educational activities. Everyone I know seems to love Eveline and Abacus.

For nursery schools (so after age 2) it is also worth looking at Lochinvar towards Clapham South which is very good and much cheaper than lots of the others.

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