Walton Pre-Preparatory School

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About Walton Pre-Preparatory School

Name Walton Pre-Preparatory School
Ofsted Inspections
Address The Old Rectory, Church Lane, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes, MK7 6BB
Phase Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Full day care
Gender Mixed
Local Authority MiltonKeynes
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this early years setting?

The provision is good

Children follow an exciting and ambitious curriculum that offers them a wide range of enjoyable experiences. For example, children take part in ballet and tennis classes and enjoy weekly cooking sessions. They grow fruits and vegetables from seed in the extensive grounds of the nursery.

Overall, staff support children well and they make good progress in their learning. Children develop into confident talkers who can express themselves and their needs articulately and with enthusiasm. Staff support young children well, for example, using songs and stories to gain children's interest.

Older children use questions to help... deepen their understanding and staff give explanations, introducing children to new words and expanding on their vocabulary. Babies make good progress in their physical development and staff are alert to how babies learn best. For example, staff know babies need to spend time lying on their stomachs to strengthen their core muscles.

There are multiple activities are available to help children to practise and perfect the use of tools such as scissors, chalks, pencils and knives and forks.Children behave well and show courtesy and respect for staff and each other. Staff teach children about good manners.

Children show they feel confident and content at the nursery. They separate from parents with confidence and are eager to start learning.

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

The matron, who manages the nursery, explains the intent of the curriculum and how staff nurture children to develop into independent individuals.

The curriculum is well sequenced so that children accumulate skills they need in readiness for their futures. Parents report that their children emerge from the nursery as confident individuals who can read and write and who are emotionally secure.Older children explore the outdoor environment with a sense of freedom and excitement, and this is when some of their most productive learning takes place.

Children talk with wonder about the 'carrot and pheasant smoothies' they make as they create potions and use their imagination. When children notice that a bent feather looks like a straw, they include this in their play.Overall, staff know children well and support their learning effectively.

However, on occasion, staff do not find out detailed information from parents and professionals about children's prior needs and experiences. Consequently, staff cannot plan a precise curriculum that meets their individual needs from the very outset.Staff provide a programme for supporting children's early reading skills.

Children start with picture books and learn about how to handle them, turn the pages and take information from illustrations. Parents report that children become ambitious early readers who enjoy working their way through the extensive library of books.Staff do not always give children opportunities to lead their own learning and sometimes move them quickly from one activity to another.

This means that children cannot become absorbed in their experiences and fully embed what they are learning.Staff value children's individuality and what makes them unique and special. They provide a wide range of resources that help children to identify with characters that reflect themselves and their families.

Children remain in small groups throughout their time at the nursery. As a result, they form close relationships with their key person and each other. Parents know who their child's key person is and exchange information with them regularly to support children's learning and development at home.

Staff complete mandatory training each year, such as in relation to safeguarding and first aid. Managers supervise their performance through regular appraisals and observations of their practice. However, since the COVID-19 pandemic began, opportunities for professional development outside mandatory requirements have been limited.

This means that some staff have not had rich opportunities to increase their knowledge, skills and personal effectiveness in order to confidently put the curriculum into action.The routine at the nursery is familiar for children. They have enough time to rest and sleep and mealtimes are relaxed and unhurried occasions.

Staff are respectful of children and ensure that they have plenty of warning before carrying out care practices, such as nappy changing.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.Staff are clear about their role in keeping children safe at the nursery.

The leadership team put robust measures in place to recruit suitable staff and monitor their ongoing suitability. All staff readily recognise signs and symptoms that might indicate that children are at risk of harm. There is a well-established line of reporting to enable staff to pass on any concerns about children's welfare.

Those designated with responsibility for safeguarding understand their role in working with local safeguarding partners. Risk assessments are effective in keeping children safe as they play and learn and move around the nursery premises.

What does the setting need to do to improve?

To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should: gather more information from parents and professionals to tailor care and support for children's needs from the outset provide children with consistent opportunities to lead their play and become immersed in the exciting curriculum activities on offer nexpand on staff's professional development so they have wider opportunities to enhance their personal knowledge and more confidently deliver the curriculum.

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