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What do i need to be looking for in a good nursery?(4 Posts)
Hi. I'm currently pg with my first dc and due in Nov. I know im early in thinking about a Nursery but i want to be sure that i have a place for my child in the nursery of my choice, not what was left closer to the time. My problem is, i really don't know how to establish what distinguishes an excellent nursery from a fair/poor one.
I haven't made any enquires yet, but want to before i give birth. Can anyone suggest things i should be looking for / asking that would help indicate which is the best nursery. Once i go back to work (after about 1 year) i expect to need a place at least 3 days a week, for full days. Other than this - and i know this is niave, but i'm really not sure what i want from a nursery. So suggestions of things i should be asking myself would also be helpful.
Ive had a quick look of the ofsted website for their reviews but some reports date back as far as 2007. Overall the majority seem to provide 'good' care, with one or too being just 'satisfactory'. But none ive come across yet are 'outstanding'. Is 'good' good enough?
Personally I wouldn't worry too much about the Ofsted report, for me it's more about what the people are like who work there and the general feeling you get from the place. Make sure you arrange to look around plenty of them and have a good chat to the managers and staff.
We picked our nursery because it had been recommended by a friend and just because of how much the staff there loved their jobs and the fantastic relationship they seemed to have with the children. We just got so much of a better feeling about it than the other ones we had visited, some of which should have been better on paper and were more expensive. DS1 has been going there for about 18 months now and loves it, also all the staff are really exited about DS2 starting next month, their attitude has made me feel a lot better about going back to work and leaving him with them.
An ofsted inspector at a nursery I know said that for a nursery to get outstanding rather than good, they have to have 'that wow factor'. It comes down to the opinions of inspectors. I wouldn't bother with only satisfactory ones though.
The truth is, you can be dropped from Outstanding to Good on the whim of a particular inspector on a particular day. Also missing a single (unimportant) piece of paperwork can result in this too. For me, the main thing is how you feel about the place when you visit yourself, not what another person tells you that you should feel.