A nursery in Hastings who was found to have prioritised cleaning over the supervision of children has had its rating slashed to ‘inadequate’.

Education watchdog Ofsted found that downgrading the setting was an appropriate course of action after what it described as ‘a serious incident involving a child’.

Inspector Jo Caswell was asked to visit Greenway Nursery after concerns were raised over the summer about children’s safety, staff deployment and supervision levels.

After the visit, Ms Caswell’s report stated: “Senior staff do not take enough action to make sure children are protected from risks within the nursery.

“Staff prioritise cleaning routines, rather than supervising children. As a result, a child was put at risk.”

The effectiveness of the leadership and management, as well as the personal development, behaviour and welfare of the children were rated ‘inadequate’, while the quality of teaching, and the outcomes for children were rated ‘requires improvement’.

The setting is run by the Fellowship of St Nicolas charity and after the inspection result, the trustees were said to be deeply disappointed.

A spokesman said: “However, we did all we could to re-assure families that we are absolutely committed to care of children and we continue to do everything possible to bring the setting to a good place.

“We have welcomed the advice and guidance from the inspection report taking decisive action to address the issues raised at the time of the report.”

In her report, Ms Caswell identified 9 areas which needed improvement, including staff understanding of using risk assessment to identify potential hazards.

The inspection also highlighted the need for leaders to improve the quality of teaching to ensure staff took more account of the needs of children who spoke English as an additional language, as well as those with special educational needs and the quieter ones who preferred to learn in different ways.

When it came to describing the nursery’s strengths, Ms Caswell said the staff worked in close partnership with parents to support their children’s learning at home. It also recognised that staff knew what to do when it came to reporting any concerns about a child’s welfare.

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