A “WARM, welcoming and nurturing” preschool with “kind and caring” staff has turned it around after going from inadequate to good in just half a year.

St John's Green Playgroup, in Colchester, had been rated good when it was inspected in 2019 but an inspection last July found weaknesses in the management of the playgroup which, in turn, led to inadequate safeguarding procedures.

Since then, workers have implemented several changes and received their new and improved good rating following a fresh inspection from Ofsted last month.

Inspector Lisa Topham noted the manager and staff have “worked hard since the last inspection to ensure they follow the safeguarding procedures”.

Gazette: Site - St John's Green playgroup has been rated goodSite - St John's Green playgroup has been rated good (Image: Google)

The report continued: “Recent training has helped staff to feel more confident about reporting concerns and talking openly about safeguarding children.

“The manager and the staff team have made improvements to the playgroup.

“The manager regularly conducts training, supervision and observations of the staff's practice to support the staff to improve their teaching of the curriculum.”

The new report was full of praise for the staff and their support for the children.

It said: “Staff create a warm, welcoming and nurturing environment for children. They are kind, caring and attentive to children's needs.

“These positive relationships help children to approach their learning and play with confidence and enthusiasm.”

Examples of children enjoying the setting included children pretending to make dinner from mud, leaves and sticks and staff helping children to bathe dirty animal toys.

Gazette: Watchdog - the playgroup received an improved rating following a new Ofsted inspectionWatchdog - the playgroup received an improved rating following a new Ofsted inspection (Image: Ofsted)

Inspectors also noted how children learn how to keep themselves healthy and how staff encourage children to develop a love of books and reading and support them to develop mathematical skills.

They also said parents are “extremely” happy with the playgroup and are “well informed” about their child's development, adding the staff provide a “family feel” to the playgroup.

New notes now describe the arrangements for safeguarding as “effective”.

“There is an open and positive culture around safeguarding that puts children's interests first,” the report said.

Ofsted told the playgroup in order to further improve, it should support staff to “continue to develop their knowledge and implementation of the curriculum”.