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Hillcrest Community Centre, Bay Vue Road, Newhaven, BN9 9LH
Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Full day care
Highlights from Latest Inspection
What is it like to attend this early years setting?
The provision is good
The manager has successfully created a small friendly nursery in which children feel safe and secure.
Children show high levels of confidence and their individual personalities shine through. They happily voice their opinions and know these will be respected. Toddlers demonstrate this when they explain clearly that they do not want to go in the garden because they want to finish the picture they are creating.
Staff consistently listen to and respect children's wishes. The manager works with staff effectively to ensure they can follow her aim. This is to support children to develop the skills they need for their future ...learning through personalised activities that link to their individual interests.
This is seen in practice when children ask to play with slime, and staff use this as a basis for teaching children how to pronounce letter sounds clearly. Children eagerly make the sounds of letters that they find hidden in the slime. They remain fascinated and eager as they develop skills that will support them in their future literacy.
Staff have high expectations of what children can achieve. They monitor children's progress attentively to notice where support is needed and provide effective interventions to close any gaps in progress that may form. These include by working in close partnership with other professionals.
For example, staff have implemented effective systems suggested by speech therapists to help children make good progress in their communication skills.
What does the early years setting do well and what does it need to do better?
Children develop high levels of independence. They consistently make their own choices and engage attentively in activities that they set up themselves.
For example, when one child brings paper and glue to a table, this becomes a sticking activity that many children enjoy. Children learn how to keep themselves healthy. For example, they fetch themselves drinks when they are thirsty and comment on how they warm up after physical activity.
The manager monitors children's progress robustly. She takes effective action to improve areas where children's rates of progress are lower. For example, when she noticed that many children were finding it hard to manage their feelings, she initiated beneficial systems to promote positive behaviour.
These includes 'proud clouds' where children's kind and helpful behaviour is recorded, shared and celebrated daily to help children learn what they have done well.Staff skilfully encourage the development of speech and language in a manner that closely suits the ages of the children they work with. In the baby area, staff use songs and rhymes with enthusiasm to model language.
Babies respond merrily, moving their bodies in excitement. Toddlers develop vocabulary when staff teach them new words as they play. For example, staff provide positional language when they engage with children to build sandcastles.
Older children demonstrate good language skills as they communicate with ease and use full sentences to discuss their thoughts.Children are keen to use and develop early literacy skills. They demonstrate this when they eagerly search for items recorded in writing and pictures.
They recognise that the text carries meaning and tick off the items when they find them. Children have good opportunities to develop their hand strength and control of tools. This starts in the baby room, where babies grip objects and develop hand-eye coordination as they manage to push buttons on toys.
As they get older, children are challenged to develop early writing skills using a range of activities. These include using tiny pegs to make pictures and exploring a range of mark-making materials. As a result, children develop good early writing skills.
Staff establish strong partnerships with parents, through which they include them greatly in children's learning. Parents make good use of resources that the staff share with them, such as books to continue children's learning at home. Staff find out from parents what their children can do on starting, to enable them to form starting points to build on.
However, they do not gather enough information about children's backgrounds, previous experiences and interests to help them understand fully where gaps in children's knowledge may lie.The manager values her staff greatly and ensures their well-being. She ensures that their responsibilities are easily manageable.
The manager eagerly supports staff's professional development by offering training opportunities to help them better meet the needs of the children in their care. For example, staff who work with babies have recently learned useful strategies to improve practice further in this area. The manager supports staff to develop as practitioners.
However, she does not consistently pinpoint where practice needs to be moved forward the most in order to help staff build on their good teaching skills.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.The manager checks staff's suitability robustly to ensure children are in safe hands.
As soon as they start in the setting, staff fully understand the safeguarding procedures to follow if they have a concern about a child. The manager successfully ensures that all staff remain confident and knowledgeable about the signs that may indicate that a child's welfare is at risk. Staff empower children to learn how to keep themselves safe.
They encourage children to think about risks and how to manage them. For example, children realise that standing under a basketball net is unsafe and move away quickly.
What does the setting need to do to improve?
To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should: refine performance management systems to ensure any weaknesses are targeted precisely in order to support staff to build on their already good teaching skills work more closely with parents when establishing starting points for children who are new to the setting, to enable staff to fully understand children's experiences, backgrounds and progress so far.