Higher Croft Children’s Centre

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About Higher Croft Children’s Centre

Name Higher Croft Children’s Centre
Ofsted Inspections
Address Fishmoor Drive, Blackburn, Lancashire, BB2 3UY
Phase Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Sessional day care
Gender Mixed
Local Authority BlackburnwithDarwen
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this early years setting?

The provision is good

Children are happy, safe and secure in the nursery.

They develop strong relationships with their key persons and the other staff who care for them. Children behave well. They develop a good understanding of routines and know when it is time to sit down for a story or snacks.

Some children have missed important learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic. They benefit from the additional support that leaders provide, for example in developing children's routines and social interactions during play. Children become more aware of how to regulate their behaviour because of the support that staff give them.

Children focu...s well during activities and develop a positive attitude towards learning. They enjoy the range of books and stories that staff share with them. In preparation for school, children listen to a familiar story from a skilled teacher.

Children remember well what they have been taught. For example, they remember the word 'walrus' from the story and they waddle like a penguin when they go to line up. Furthermore, all children join in and have a go at using sign language to express the feelings of the penguin in the story.

This contributes to very strong outcomes for all children in their communication and language development.The nursery's work for children with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) is extremely strong. Staff implement highly effective early intervention strategies with different professionals.

This leads to unique early interventions, such as targeted groups to support children's listening, attention and language skills. This means that children with SEND make significant progress in their learning and development.

What does the early years setting do well and what does it need to do better?

Leaders have planned an engaging curriculum which develops children's learning across different areas of learning.

Staff incorporate children's different cultures in play to develop children's understanding of the world. This supports children to acquire essential skills for the future and prepares them well for life in modern Britain.Staff have a clear understanding of what children already know and can do.

They use this information to plan children's learning in logical steps. Pre-school children develop a secure understanding of how to count and recognise numbers from one to 10 and further. Staff ask children, 'We have three plates.

If we add one more plate, how many will we have?' Children correctly respond four.Children understand the rules of the nursery and their behaviour is good. They are encouraged to be independent at an age-appropriate level.

Toddlers engage with others as they put their coats on to go outside. Pre-school children use successful strategies to help regulate taking turns independently. This promotes children's emotional health and resilience.

Toddlers are keen to explore different textures, such as dough. They manipulate the dough in their hands, helping to develop strength in their fingers. However, sometimes staff introduce too many learning concepts and do not give children enough time to process questions and answer them.

This delays children's development of building vocabulary and expressing their thoughts. Pre-school children welcomed the inspector into their play, saying, 'Look at the print on my dough.' This demonstrates the children's growing confidence and self-esteem.

When staff talk to children, they get down to children's level, speak clearly and use the correct pronunciation to influence learning and behaviour. Occasionally, staff working with toddler-age children focus too intently on a single aspect of the activity they provide. For example, in the sand, staff follow children's lead and support children to build a sandcastle.

However, staff do not help the children to extend their language and thinking skills further.Staff partnerships with parents and carers are good. Parents comment on the 'supportive staff' and value the guidance that staff give to them.

For example, they appreciate the help from staff to potty train their children successfully and manage behaviour at home.Staff enjoy coming to work and feel supported by leaders. There are effective systems in place to help them manage their workload.

This contributes to positive staff well-being.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.All staff attend safeguarding training to ensure that their knowledge is up to date.

This ensures that staff have a clear understanding of how to safeguard children. For example, they are alert to the dangers of radicalisation and county lines. Staff understand the importance of taking prompt action to protect children.

They know the procedures to follow to report any concerns they may have about a child in their care. Leaders and staff know how to respond to an allegation against a member of staff. This helps to protect children from harm.

Leaders put in place effective procedures, indoors and outdoors, to make sure that children are cared for in a safe and secure environment. They deploy staff effectively so that children are well supervised and cared for.

What does the setting need to do to improve?

To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should: focus more precisely on the implementation of planned activities to challenge and extend children's learning, particularly in the toddler room strengthen support, coaching and training opportunities for staff in the toddler room to raise the quality of teaching to the highest level.

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