Nurseries set for spot checks

Nurseries may be subject to the unannounced inspections already
made on schools under proposals from education inspectorate

Under the plans child care and funded nursery education would be
subject to inspection at little or no notice.

For childminders, Ofsted wishes to establish the minimum period
of notice necessary to establish whether they will be home when an
inspector calls.

Ofsted is considering introducing simple self-evaluation forms,
which child care and nursery providers would fill in prior to

The inspectorate says it plans to focus inspection reports on
children’s experiences of the setting, and to tailor its
inspections to individual providers.

Reports where the care is judged “inadequate” could be made
longer than those where there were no concerns.

Ofsted is considering whether accreditation under the Investors
in Children scheme might be taken into account when deciding the
frequency of inspections.

Another proposal is to link the early years and nursery grading
scales to scales used for school staff, to create a common grading
scale for all children’s services.

Chief inspector of schools David Bell said the proposals were
“vital” at a time when the Children Bill plans to integrate
children’s services, and the government aims to build
children’s centres and to extend school hours.

“Inspection bodies need to reflect as much as possible the
integration of child care provision,” he said.

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