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Nursery rated Inadequate by Ofsted

(40 Posts)
Battenburg11 Sun 27-Oct-19 08:04:19

My DC’s nursery has recently received an Inadequate rating in all areas by Ofsted and we’re told by the nursery that the Council will revoke their funding so my DC will not be able to receive the 30hours free government funding but they feel confident that the funding will be reinstated once they are re inspected by Ofsted. Nursery said they will raise a complaint against inspector as they feel they were not treated fairly. We are generally happy with nursery.

I’m in a dilemma as to what to do. My DC has formed good friends and bonds well with her Carer so I’m not sure if moving to another nursery would be unsettling for DC but at the same time, we really could do with the free 30 hours to help with our finances and something that we were looking forward to. My DC turns in December.

Does anyone have experience of this as to how soon a nursery will be re inspected and funding reinstated once revoked? Thanks

OP’s posts: |
DullPortraits Sun 27-Oct-19 08:07:10

Usually within 3 months ofsted do a spot check and re inspect.. the nursery get no notice of this. What was their downfall and what have they been told to improve on? This would be what made me decide to keep my child there.

EssentialHummus Sun 27-Oct-19 08:08:15

Depends what the issues were for me.

Battenburg11 Sun 27-Oct-19 08:21:22

The nursery opened under new management/name around 18 months ago and in that time, the nursery has had a very high staff turnover and this has affected the quality of teaching mentioned by Ofsted and quality of staff. They also commented on lack of supervision especially in the garden and lack of interaction/praise for the children.

As mentioned, my DC being with her new Carer has built a strong relationship compared to the previous Room Carer and has good friends so this is causing my dilemma plus DC attends Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and I probably won’t get these days at another nursery.

OP’s posts: |
Sunshine196 Sun 27-Oct-19 08:35:42

I don't think that ofsted will hold up a complaint against an inspector as this is very rare. However, if they are due to be reinspected in 3 months, you're happy with the nursery, your daughter is happy & you can afford it I would wait it out for the 3 months. Often an inadequate is easily turned around & could be something very simple such as paperwork. Ofsted inspections are important but don't always portray reality. There are lots of places that perform well on the day & get outstanding but it's just a show. Tough one but if your gut feeling is that you're all happy id just wait for now. Also your nursery should have been paid for this term (until Xmas) so you might not have to pay until after then so you could check this out.

Sunshine196 Sun 27-Oct-19 08:38:56

Sorry just read you mention dc not dd & that they don't turn 3 until December so ignore my comment about funding. I need more caffeine.

jackparlabane Sun 27-Oct-19 08:39:41

This happened to dd's nursery - disgruntled ex-staff made allegations, inspection had serious errors, and a new insoection 3 weeks later reinstated the Good rating. If you are happy with the carers, stick with it.

Battenburg11 Sun 27-Oct-19 08:44:48

Thanks. Yes it’s my daughter. I always assumed DC is abbreviated for dear child? The nursery wasn’t busy prior to inspection and I’m concerned that parents after reading the inspection report may withdraw their child so I’ll be nervous as whether the nursery will be financially viable to remain open if children start leaving. They are holding a parents’s evening in two weeks to discuss so I’m hoping a lot of concerns will be addressed by them. But it’s a catch 22 whether to wait for inspection within 3 months and hoping they’ll get a higher ranking and if they don’t and I haven’t moved my child then we’ve have lost further funding.

OP’s posts: |
Battenburg11 Sun 27-Oct-19 08:48:12

Thanks Jackparbalane. That’s really reassuring to read. Nursery said they had a parent complaint which prompted the Ofsted inspection but are complaints anonymous as could it have been from a disgruntled ex employee?

OP’s posts: |
Sunshine196 Sun 27-Oct-19 08:51:47

That's good the nursery are engaging with you. In all honesty, I bet 90% of childcare providers would get an inadequate with an unannounced inspection. Not because they don't do a good job but because the paperwork is so intense & vast it's impossible to keep on top of it all as well as marking sure the children are well looked after in the day. There's no time to do it whilst you are engaging with the children. Id wait until the meeting & go from there.

Bubblysqueak Sun 27-Oct-19 08:59:52

I would keep her there. Her funding won't kick in until January and by then huge improvements will be made and Ofsted will have visited again.
But don't be surprised if more staff leave, it's incredibly hard work making the changes that Ofsted want to see in the short time frame given for the changes to happen.

itsaboojum Sun 27-Oct-19 10:26:13

"I bet 90% of childcare providers would get an inadequate with an unannounced inspection"

I think you might lose your bet for that rather insulting remark. Just because parents don’t see the vast amount of behind-the-scenes work that has to be done I still no reason to assume childcare professionals don’t knuckle down and get on with it. I can personally attest to 10-20 unpaid hours (usually towards the high end of that range) worked with no children present every week.

Sunshine196 Sun 27-Oct-19 10:59:19

Sorry @itsaboojum I didn't mean to offend. I totally agree with what you are saying. My clumsy writing as trying to imply that there is so much that goes in behind the scenes that it is really difficult to keep on top off. You're right, parents don't know the half of it. It's not only the child related day to day things. No offence intended I promise. I just worded it incorrectly.

itsaboojum Sun 27-Oct-19 14:15:05


No worries. Thank you for your clarifying.

itsaboojum Sun 27-Oct-19 14:27:17

OP. Ofsted judgments are often quite arbitrary and inconsistent. Complaints against inspectors seldom achieve anything anyway. But I’d be concerned about a setting that was rated 'inadequate' in all areas, and would want to know the specific failings. One childcare provider near me was inspected by Ofsted recently and they identified several basic safety failings, but she only scored 'requires improvement'.

Going on the normal process, Ofsted will have identified one or more 'actions' which the nursery must complete within 2-4 weeks or be at risk of suspension. If they achieve that first objective, then reinspection normally takes places within 3 months.

Speak to your local authority funding team. IME it’s more usual for them to give a provider an opportunity to demonstrate improvement before withdrawing funding, but it may depend on the specific failings identified by Ofsted.

DullPortraits Sun 27-Oct-19 17:27:51

Also the ofsted inspection is graded in 4 separate areas.. so for example if 3/4 are GOOD and 1/4 is REQUIRES IMPROVEMENT then the overall rating is logged as "REQUIRES IMPROVEMENT " so its worth not jumping the gun until you know for sure.

itsaboojum Sun 27-Oct-19 18:34:22

The current EY Inspection Handbook indicates that an overall 'inadequate' grade is given where any of the following applies:-

*safeguarding is ineffective
*any one of those four separate areas (as mentioned by DullPortraits) is deemed 'inadequate'
*EYFS breaches significantly affect children’s safety, wellbeing, or learning and development
*the setting has already had two previous requires improvement' ratings and has still not achieved 'good'

However, I note the OP said the nursery had "received an Inadequate rating in all areas by Ofsted" so this doesn’t look like a case of three areas 'good' and one 'inadequate'. In inspection terms, this really is as bad as it gets, short of an immediate suspension.

Battenburg11 Sun 27-Oct-19 19:06:22

Just having a quick review of the first page of the Ofsted report before I put my DD to bed:
Rated Inadequate in:

Quality of education
Behaviour and attitudes
Personal development
Leadership and management

OP’s posts: |
GleamInYourEyes Sun 27-Oct-19 19:12:48

That's pretty bad, I would imagine lots of parents will move their children especially as they won't be able to use funding.

Contrary to what the previous poster suggested, I know a couple of childminders who had unannounced inspections after a complaint and they both got 'good'.
A bit of paperwork out of date would be a 'requires improvement' not an inadequate!

GeorgieTheGorgeousGoat Sun 27-Oct-19 19:14:24

That’s pretty spectacular to get inadequate across the board!

itsaboojum Sun 27-Oct-19 19:34:51

The four areas mentioned by Battenburg11 strongly suggest this nursery’s was inspected in September or October, under Ofsted’s current EIF inspection procedures.

The EIF requires an inspector to match what they see to a set of prescribed descriptions on a 'best fit' basis. In theory at least, this system is supposed to make the whole system less arbitrary and somewhat harder than previously for individual inspectors to make glaring errors of judgment. I suspect that means a complaint against an inspector is less likely than ever to be upheld.

If you want to see the descriptions, you can download the ' Early Years inspection handbook for Ofsted registered provision' document reference 180040 from

The descriptions really 'inadequate' are quite staggeringly poor.

Battenburg11 Sun 27-Oct-19 19:46:24

Thanks everyone. Yes inspection was on 30 September. Itsaboojum, it sounds the ratings are as bad as it can get, do you think I should about withdrawing my child or give them the benefit of improving? I really don’t want to waste my eligibility for 30 hours funding from January but would be prepared to loose a month or two to avoid unsettling my child assuming the nursery is still financially viable then.

OP’s posts: |
GeorgieTheGorgeousGoat Sun 27-Oct-19 20:49:00

Have a look at this OP.

I think (!) points 91, 100 and 139 onwards will be helpful but skim the whole document.

Inspection Framework

GeorgieTheGorgeousGoat Sun 27-Oct-19 20:53:23

I’ve already been inspected using this framework and actually found it very pleasant, as inspections go it was very relaxed and I can only imagine how bad they will have had to have been to achieve inadequate.

Just a separate point from (skim) reading that document @itsaboojum and not to contradict you, I think the best fit judgements are only for Good and Requires Improvement now.

FleurNancy Sun 27-Oct-19 21:38:01

I might be bucking the trend here but actually when my children were at nursery all I cared about was that they were safe and happy. Quality of education? Not bothered about them being "educated" at age 2. I think OFSTED in an EYFS setting is frankly a bit bonkers. Change of management in any role usually results in an unsettled period with staff leaving/joining. It's not compulsory for children to be at nursery. If your daughter has a good bond with her keyworker and is happy there then I don't see any reason to leave to be honest. Clearly there are failings on paper but those will now be addressed, can only go upwards. After all, she's not going to fail her GCSE's because she went to an Inadequate nursery. I'd sit tight.

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