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Advice needed!

(4 Posts)
Crimebusterofthesea Mon 24-Sep-12 11:44:32

First choice nursery has messed up the dates I requested and this now means I am on the hunt for alternative nurseries - not an easy job as he will be going in January and a lot of spaces have obviously been filled. I am going to look round one on Thursday - Ofsted rated 'Good' (the first choice was 'Outstanding') which have said they can fit him in. Is there a massive difference between the two ratings? I know a lot will be down to gut feeling, but I do feel a little disappointed that he won't be going to our first choice. The other thing is, would it be awful of me to take him out of the nursery he goes to first, when our first choice has places available? He will start in January at 12 months and the first choice does not have space until September. What do you think? Obviously we would only do this if we felt he would be better off at the first choice! TIA.

BackforGood Mon 24-Sep-12 12:14:02

Re the changing, I'd wait and see - you may be very, very happy with the 1st Nursery/2nd choice or you may not.
I'd would not put much credence into OFSTED ratings tbh. Do read the text of the report, and don't go just on the numbers. Even OFSTED have to jump through all sorts of hoops and can rate excellent settings as "only" satisfactory if particular criteria aren't met. Good, is generally that - a 'Good' setting. Have a look how old the inspection report is too - a lot will change if they've had a new manager in since the inspection report.
But, as you've already stated, go with your gut instinct.
I'd ask about staff turnover, staff ongoing training and development. I'd ask if they get to go outside through free flow, or just at set times each day, and what provision there is if the weather really is awful. A lot of people get worked up about Nursery food choices, so I'd ask about that. Depends so much on what is crucial to you, tbh.... sleep times and arrangements maybe.
I know it's hard, but try and project what he will be like at 18months, and then 2 years, etc. Don't fall in love with the baby room and take no notice of what will happen when he moves up.

Crimebusterofthesea Mon 24-Sep-12 13:52:54

Thanks for your reply - I am looking forward to visiting, as you say, there is so much more to it than just what the report says. Fingers crossed we like it!

jeaux90 Mon 24-Sep-12 16:21:04

OFSTED does judge on some weird criteria. For example, the nursery my daughter goes to is truly great, but they got marked down because of lack of ethnicity in the class for example. Crazy really, it is just a pure reflection of who lives in the neighbourhood imho. Anyway, as Backforgood says, look at the important stuff in the report not just the overall ranking.

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