Wigan nursery staff ‘overwhelmed’ by children

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A nursery has been criticised by an inspector, who found children’s health and safety was “compromised” and teaching was “inadequate”.

Ofsted will take enforcement action against The Wendy House Nursery, based at The Edge in Wigan.

It was given the lowest possible grade of “inadequate” after an inspection, which was carried out as a result of a risk assessment.

A report by inspector Vickie Halliwell said: “The arrangements for safeguarding are inadequate. Little regard is given to the statutory requirements. This means that children’s safety and welfare, and their learning and development, are compromised.”

She found staff provided unsuitable play materials, such as ink dabbers with small lids given to babies.

The required staff-to-child ratios were “not consistently maintained” and staff supervision arrangements were described as “weak”.

Staff who had not completed training on the care of babies were “routinely” looking after children under two.

Teaching was “inadequate” with children not making enough progress and not being “adequately supported” to learn skills needed for school.

Staff were “overwhelmed” by the demands of the children and some did “not have a good enough understanding of how young children learn”.

Some children were “often bored and wander aimlessly” and the pre-school room was “chaotic”, the inspector found.

Manager Wendy Porter said she was “extremely disappointed” with the report.

She said: “We were judged ‘good’ at our previous inspection, which was only last year, and we have only built upon our strengths. We strongly believe that we are a good setting; as a strong team of experienced practitioners, our children are settled and are making good progress with their development and parents are happy with the way we care for their children.”