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Not 100% sure about nursery- am I being too anal?

(6 Posts)
RosyJ Thu 24-Jul-08 16:24:34


I am in a bit of a dilemma. I am due back at uni in september and need a full time nursery place for my 1 year old. We had found a lovely one for him but he hasn't got a place in time. There is only one other one in the area, that I am entitled to use (loads belong to other uni's or hospitals) that I am willing to consider- the rest aren't very nice. So anyway, I have a couple of 'concerns' about it and I'm not sure if I'm founded in them or just being a bit anal.

The only room I really liked was luckily the one he would be going into. I didn't like the baby area at all or the rooms for older children very much. I'm not sure if the fact that I didn't like the other areas should put me off the whole nursery?

They were really funny about cloth nappies. The manager told me they couldn't use them because Ofsted said they were unhygienic? I said this couldn't be right as the other nursery were really enthusiastic about them. Anyway I showed her the nappies (pocket ones) and she changed her mind saying those would be ok, she thought I meant terry squares. Anyway I don't like the way she used ofsted as an excuse by saying something that wasn't true because she thought cloth would be too much hassle... at least thats how its come across to me.

I'm not sold on their menu. But to be fair I haven't been convinced about any menu so far. It wasn't bad, just not what I would feed him. I also don't like how their lunch is at 11.30- is it just me who thinks this is strange? At home he would have only just finished his morning snack. They only have a light tea at 3.30 then he wouldn't get his proper dinner till around 6.30, and that seems like a long time between meals to me. Maybe its normal though?

They don't take them out very often, even to the park, only a couple of times a month. The other nursery took them out at least once a week and more in summer. They also don't have people in to do things with them. Our first choice has ballet, french, drama and music lessons included (silly for babies I know!) which I know he wouldn't 'learn' or probably even sit through for a couple of years, but it does break up the day and give him new stimulation. This nursery does nothing like that and I worry he will be stuck in the same room with the same people week in week out.

The staff weren't overly friendly as they were with the first choice. They also said they have a low staff turnover but I wasn't totally convinced by the manager, you know the feeling when people are saying things just because thats what you want to hear?

Anyway, it was nice enough and I don't have a huge amount of choice if I want to go back to uni. Would it be acceptable to keep him on the other nursery list and move him when a place became available or it is unfair to move him around after a few months? Its Coral Day Nursery in Waterloo by the way incase anyone is familiar with it! The one we love but don't have a place at is St. Patrick's Montessori also at Waterloo.

Obviously I'm never going to find somewhere perfect, because that would be at home with me, but I have to put him somewhere if I want to finish uni. Is it alright to say 'it will do' about childcare? He will be there for a lot of his time and do a fair amount of growing and developing there which is why I'm panicking a bit! I would hate for him to miss out on anything or be forgotten in the corner.

Sorry this has become very long! I didn't realise how worried I was till I started writing it down!

Thanks very much,

thebecster Thu 24-Jul-08 16:32:14

Don't like the sound of 'we can't do it because of Ofsted' and then backing down on it - that's not very honest is it?
Mealtimes at DSs nursery are 8am breakfast, 11am snack, 12:30pm lunch, 3pm tea, hometime at 6pm. But they give them biscuits in between sometimes too, and the occasional ice lolly if they're in the park.
Also if you don't like the older children's room, how long is it til your DS moves up there?
When they said 'low staff turnover' did you ask how long each staff member has stayed? Our DSs key worker has been there 5 years, and his last key worker had been there 13 years. Now that's low staff turnover!
Could you use a childminder while waiting for a place at your preferred nursery?

cmotdibbler Thu 24-Jul-08 16:34:38

Those meal times are totally normal - I think all nurseries have lunch at 11.30 so that those who only do mornings have eaten and been cleaned up etc by picking up time, and the afternoon children don't arrive immediatly after lunch when the all dayers should be napping.

Going out - do they have outdoor play space ? If so, not so important to go to the park (although nice). But again, most don't go somewhere off site that often.

DS's nursery only has Jo Jingles as a formal lesson. But they have a very varied day, and do loads of activities.

Start him there, and if you feel like it, move him when a place comes up at the other place. But it sounds like a very normal place to me.

PortAndLemon Thu 24-Jul-08 16:36:56

What about having a childminder to begin with and then if/when a place comes up at the first choice nursery moving him if you still want to?

RosyJ Thu 24-Jul-08 18:18:51

Thanks for the feedback! I have just had a ring round of a few childminders and will visit a few to compare! The trouble is we don't know where we are going to be living as we plan to move soon so its hard to know where to find one. They seem to be much cheaper than nurseries. I now have questions for the childminding section too though!


persoanlly from my exprerience, if it did not feel right i would not put my ds there,

I first loved my ds's nursery but in the last year its really changed- lots of staff been and gone etc-(any many other problems) when i voiced my concerns i got attitude from the younger staff- and told it was non of my business y people leave!!!OMG needless to say we have moved ds to a pre school from sept-

but follow your instinct- i think i would go with childminder till your preferref nursery has room,

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