Bright Little Stars: Winner and Finalist at The National Nursery Recognition Awards 2020

Bright Little Stars: Winner and Finalist at The National Nursery Recognition Awards 2020

Press release from Bright Little Stars Nursery.

Bright Little Stars Nursery won ‘Best Website’ at the National Nursery Recognition Awards 2020. We are absolutely overjoyed with this achievement and so pleased to also be a finalist for ‘Best Staff Development’.

We would like to thank you all for your tremendous support. The winners were selected based on a combination of your votes, together with consideration from an independent panel of judges.  There were many applicants and strong competition for these national industry awards.

Please join us as we take a moment to reflect and be thankful.

Many congratulations to the team on winning ‘Best Website’. From the outset, we felt strongly about setting up a user-friendly, fun and informative website for our parents and the local community. We have always tried to ensure our website is central to our registration process, information sharing, communication and most importantly parent partnership through initiatives like home learning via our parent portal. So many BLS employees have contributed over the years through ideas, feedback and support all the way from Head Office to our staff in the learning rooms. It’s been a wonderful journey watching our website evolve as we’ve grown from one to a group of nurseries and a privilege to have such a wonderful platform to showcase key initiatives such as our BLS Learning Programme. At the heart of everything we do are the children, their happiness and the love, care and wonderful activities our staff bring to life in their learning rooms and outdoor areas.

Congratulations also to the team on being a finalist for ‘Best Staff Development’. We pride ourselves on providing plentiful opportunities for our staff in order for them to develop not just a job, but a satisfying career with us where they can enhance their skills and qualifications.  We believe that by developing our team in every aspect, not only through gaining qualifications, they will be dedicated to providing wonderful opportunities for the children they teach and care for every day. We have implemented many key initiatives relating to staff opportunities, training, development, benefits and appreciation. We have a rigorous recruitment process and take great care settling in our employees, ensuring they continue to remain happy and motivated members of the BLS Family.

For further information about the awards and photos, please visit our website.

It’s amazing for Bright Little Stars Nursery to be recognised nationally for both these awards. Well done to everyone involved.

We sincerely thank you for all your support from all of us at Bright Little Stars!

For further information about Bright Little Stars Nursery in Harrow, Mill Hill, Stanmore or Watford please visit our website.


Double success for UK’s largest early years training provider

Double success for UK’s largest early years training provider

Parenta Training started 2020 with not one, but two successful outcomes under its belt – from an Ofsted inspection and from a matrix Standard audit.

The UK’s largest training provider of early years childcare apprenticeships passed its Ofsted inspection, achieving ‘reasonable progress’ across the board – an impressive outcome for a first inspection under Ofsted’s new Education Inspection Framework (EIF).

For a training provider, ‘reasonable progress’ indicates that a provider is not only taking actions that are having a beneficial impact on apprentices, but making improvements that are sustainable and ensuring that these are based on thorough quality assurance procedures.

In the official report, remarks from Ofsted include the fact that the vision at Parenta is very clear: to support Early Years provision and to develop well-qualified apprentices. It notes that the leadership and management teams have worked hard to ensure expert knowledge and skills are also being developed and supported through its Continuing Professional Development (CPD), in addition to the core apprenticeship. The report identified that leaders have ensured that early identification of Additional Learning Support (ALS) requirements enables support to be available, so that those with additional needs can progress and achieve well.

When talking to employers and learners, inspectors noted that employers were positive about Parenta and the progress updates they receive. They value the impact that apprentices have on their business and there is effective employer engagement. They recognised that Parenta apprentices are safe and feel safe and know who to inform when they have a concern.

The feedback from the matrix Standard assessment was just as positive. This international quality outcome-based standard is for companies that deliver information advice and guidance (IAG) and when assessing Parenta’s submission, the auditors commented that the quality of both data and resources that have been developed across all areas of the learning journey were of a very high quality. They noted that Parenta’s main strength is very loud and clear through the overall feedback sought from learners and employers – its assessors are ‘first-class’.

Parenta CEO Allan Presland said; “We could not have possibly achieved this without the immense hard work of the team. The inspection and assessment both highlight our commitment here at Parenta and our assessors do nothing less than a remarkable job with our learners. Their professionalism and competency shine though, something that is evident in their expert use of questioning to assist our learners in gaining a deeper knowledge and allowing them to develop stronger skills in their roles. After all, that is why we are here! These results clearly confirm that the quality of our work and the clear vision we have paved the way for successful training delivery.”

Parenta Training’s full Ofsted report can be found here.


Coronavirus has reached the UK

Coronavirus has reached the UK

It was confirmed last Friday by the chief medical officer for England that two people have tested positive for coronavirus in the UK.  The two Chinese nationals were located in York, but are now being treated at Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle. It has since emerged that one of them is a student at the University of York.

The university has said the student was not on campus or in student accommodation before or after exposure to the virus. Public Health England (PHE) said it was making “good progress” in tracing people who have come into close contact with the two Chinese nationals.

Also on Friday, 83 Britons were evacuated from Wuhan in China and are in quarantine for 14 days in Arrowe Park Hospital in Wirral.

The new coronavirus has caused the deaths of over 360 people. However, the numbers change daily and as at today’s date (3rd February), the virus has reached more than 17,000 people in China and penetrated 22 other countries, causing over 100 additional cases.

The Wuhan coronavirus outbreak is a new illness and scientists are still assessing how it spreads from person to person, but similar viruses tend to spread via cough and sneeze droplets. The virus can be spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Hand-washing is the first line of defence.

This is the advice given on how to protect yourself and others:

  • Wash your hands: wet your hands with clean, running water and apply soap. Lather your hands, including the backs, between your fingers, and under your nails and scrub for at least 20 seconds. Rinse.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue in the bin and wash your hands. If you do not have a tissue to hand, cough or sneeze into your elbow rather than your hands.
  • Face masks offer some protection as they block liquid droplets. However, they do not block smaller aerosol particles that can pass through the material of the mask. The masks also leave the eyes exposed and there is evidence that some viruses can infect a person through the eyes.

All the latest information and advice from the UK government can be found here.



The Duchess of Cambridge launches survey to help under-fives

The Duchess of Cambridge launches survey to help under-fives

Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge has launched a UK-wide survey to help improve the lives of our under-fives.

Kensington Palace said the five-question online survey aims to “spark a national conversation” to help create “lasting change for generations to come”.

The online survey, called Five Big Questions, asks for participants to give their opinion on what influences development and what period of childhood is most important for children’s happiness.

Catherine marked the launch during the last week in January with a whistle-stop tour of the UK, visiting Birmingham, London, Cardiff and Surrey. On Tuesday, she visited Thinktank, a science museum in Birmingham, on Wednesday, a baby sensory class at the Ely and Caerau Children’s Centre in Cardiff to hear about the support parents receive there and she also attended HMP Send in Woking, Surrey, to speak with women prisoners taking part in a rehabilitation programme.

This new survey will ultimately help provide important data for all those working in the early years sector, and will also inform the kind of work the Duchess of Cambridge gets involved with in the future. Those who have worked with her in this area say she is totally committed and isn’t just a figurehead. She has built up an expertise and wants to prevent the same problems affecting the same families generation after generation.

The Royal Foundation website says Catherine believes “many of society’s greatest social and health challenges” could be “mitigated or entirely avoided” if young children are given “the right support”.

Kate Stanley, from the NSPCC, says the duchess’s survey will “provide fascinating insight into how we think about the early years and it will be a vital source of information for the sector”.

Kayte Lawton, from the charity Save the Children, welcomed the survey and said it was “vital” that all children are given access to “high-quality services”.

The survey will be open until 21 February.

Source: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-51192909


ICP Nurseries honoured as one of the UK’s best places to work in 2020

ICP Nurseries honoured as one of the UK’s best places to work in 2020

Press release from ICP Nurseries.

ICP Nurseries has been honoured with a Glassdoor Employees’ Choice Award, for being one of the Best Places to Work in 2020. This award recognises employers that shine the brightest according to those who know their company best – their staff team. The Employees’ Choice Awards programme, now in its sixth year in the UK, is based solely on the input of employees, who elect to provide feedback on their jobs, work environments and companies on Glassdoor, one of the world’s largest job and recruiting sites.

ICP Nurseries Limited is a nursery company that started in 2016 and who own some of the very best nursery settings in Greater London, the Home Counties and the South East. Their approach is based on two absolute priorities; ensuring each and every child receives outstanding care and education; and, creating a culture where staff are valued, supported, rewarded and encouraged.

Tracey Storey, CEO, said “I am absolutely thrilled that ICP Nurseries has been ranked 14th in the top 50 of the best places to work in the UK. This award is down to all of our dedicated staff and I am extremely proud of everyone for this achievement. Here at ICP Nurseries, we welcome all backgrounds and experiences with a passion for childcare, so come and work for our amazing company.”

Christian Sutherland-Wong, Glassdoor president and chief operating officer, said, “This year marks the shift to a culture-first decade in the workplace. Glassdoor’s Employees’ Choice Awards winners are prioritising their culture and mission and putting employees at the heart of everything they do. In turn, their employees have recognised them as truly the Best Places to Work in 2020.  In addition, this year’s winners stand out for providing exceptional career growth opportunities and encouraging work which is driven by impact and purpose. Congratulations go to all of the companies this year who stand out in the eyes of their employees.”

On Glassdoor, current and former employees voluntarily and anonymously share insights and opinions about their work environments by sharing a company review, designed to capture a genuine and authentic inside look at what a specific job may be like at a particular company. When sharing a company review on Glassdoor, employees are asked to rate their satisfaction with the company overall, and key workplace factors like career opportunities, compensation and benefits, culture and values, senior management and work/life balance. In addition, employees are asked to describe the best reasons to work at their companies as well as any downsides.

For the complete list of the Glassdoor Best Places to Work winners in 2020, please visit: https://www.glassdoor.co.uk/Award/Best-Places-to-Work-UK-LST_KQ0,22.htm

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