West End Pre-School

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About West End Pre-School

Name West End Pre-School
Ofsted Inspections
Address Hilldene Annexe, High Street, West End, SOUTHAMPTON, SO30 3DU
Phase Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Sessional day care
Gender Mixed
Local Authority Hampshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this early years setting?

The provision is good

Children show a keen sense of belonging at this welcoming pre-school. On arrival, they are warmly welcomed by staff and settle quickly into the routine. Children independently put their belongings away, find their names to self-register and enjoy a calm start to the day.

They form close bonds with staff, who are sensitive and attentive to children's care needs. This helps them feel safe and secure.Staff carry out home visits before children start, to gather important information from parents about children's interests and find what they can already do.

This helps them to plan a meaningful learning environment that enga...ges and motivates children to explore and learn more. For example, children who have an interest in scooters and tricycles, practise whizzing and manoeuvring around obstacles in the garden, displaying great control. This contributes to children's development of good physical skills.

Staff support children's understanding of why exercise is important. They talk to children about the impact on their bodies when making healthier food choices.Staff have high expectations for children's behaviour.

They teach them to use a sand timer for turn taking. Older children impressively identify when to use the sand timer, such as when more than one child wants to play with the same toy. This shows children's social skills are developing well.

Children continue to show a clear understanding of the rules and routines throughout the day.

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

The highly knowledgeable and experienced manager creates an ambitious curriculum, which is understood well by staff. For example, staff provide new experiences to increase children's knowledge of how objects change over time.

Children hold pretend chats with close family on an old fashioned telephone with a cord and dial. They expertly turn the dial using the small muscles in their hands to register a number. Children also use modern cordless telephones, where they punch in the number and walk around as they speak.

Staff place a strong emphasis on promoting children's language and literacy skills. They introduce new words, such as 'nocturnal', and explain the meaning clearly when children play a game about animals. Children love to speak about their home experiences related to topics they are learning about.

They make marks and talk about them proudly, showing their increasing understanding that marks carry meaning. Staff skilfully use props to help bring children's favourite stories to life. For example, children experience different textures on their bare feet, which represent the various places in the story 'We're Going on a Bear Hunt'.

In this way, children learn to describe the materials and apply these words in context, such as 'long, wavy grass'.The special educational needs coordinator is instrumental in overseeing and ensuring the needs of children with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are met appropriately. Staff use targeted programmes with children when needed, for example, to boost their speaking and listening skills.

They liaise effectively with parents and other external agencies to ensure that children with SEND make the best possible progress. Children who speak English as an additional language are successfully supported by staff. They collect key words in children's home languages and use them to aid their comprehension.

The manager uses a range of methods to involve parents, staff and children in evaluating the effectiveness of the pre-school. This helps to identify areas to improve and further training for staff. However, the arrangements to monitor staff practice are not fully effective in identifying when individual staff would benefit from precisely tailored support.

For instance, some staff do not always build on children's individual knowledge and skills when interacting with a group of children with mixed ages, abilities and needs. The manager acknowledges that further support and monitoring is needed for some staff to ensure that all children benefit from a curriculum that is implemented well.Parents are very complimentary about the education and care their children receive.

They say their children are always keen to attend and have lots to tell their families about their experiences. Parents value the comprehensive information about their child's progress and care, such as through an online application, termly meetings with the key person and collection time feedback. Parents feel that the pre-school is at the heart of the community and appreciate their attendance at events, such as harvest festival at the local church.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.The manager and staff follow safeguarding procedures well. They fully understand their responsibility to keep children safe from harm.

Staff know the potential signs and symptoms that may indicate a child is at risk of abuse, including exposure to extremist views and behaviours. The manager regularly reviews the setting's policies and procedures and shares updates with staff and parents. She has a clear whistle-blowing process in place if staff have any concerns.

The manager follows robust recruitment procedures, including checking that staff are suitable to work with children. Staff complete daily and ongoing risk assessments to help minimise risks and teach children how to identify potential hazards.

What does the setting need to do to improve?

To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should: strengthen the monitoring of staff practice and target support as necessary to maintain consistently high standards of care and education for all children.

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