We can find the right nursery for you. Use our Childcare Search Service as a reliable and stress-free way to find the right place for your child.
When choosing childcare, many opt for a day nursery as they offer extended opening hours and are available all year round. As with a child minder ‘gut instinct’ plays an important role when deciding which nursery to opt for, but considering the following points can help you make your decision.
Do they provide nappies?
Are they flexible about sessions?
Are they registered for Nursery Education Grant Funding?
Do they have an outdoor area which the children access daily?
Do you feel comfortable with the manager; is she/he approachable?
Are there systems in place for staff to have continuing professional development?
Are policies and procedures accessible and understandable?
Is there a recognisable ethos and philosophy about the nursery?
Is the setting well maintained?
Do not be influenced by establishments that are all singing and dancing – sometimes the setting which appears basic is the one which is offering the highest quality care and education.
When you have established a list of your nursery preferences, start to look for a day nursery using your local Children’s Information Service or ask us to do a bespoke search for you of the nurseries that have availability when you want it. When you have established a list which meets your list of MUSTS make some appointments to visit. On these visits it is useful to have a list of things to look for and questions to ask. Take a look at our ‘Choosing a Nursery Checklist’ for a list of questions you may wish to ask.
Day nurseries are not your only childcare option when it comes to nurseries. Montessori Nurseries and Forest Nurseries are also an option. These both differ in their approach to childcare.
When choosing your nursery, you will need to be sure that the nursery complies with statutory regulations, especially with regard to safety and health and hygiene practices. Always ask to see the latest Ofsted report or access these for yourself from the Ofsted web site before you make an appointment to visit. (www.ofsted.gov.uk). For more general information, please go to our page on Ofsted. In addition, you should be aware of the government’s statutory requirements for any nursery or childminder when looking after the welfare and development of your child. These are set out in the Early Years Foundation Stage document.