'This feels like winning gold at the Olympics' - Harbury Pre-School awarded the highest mark by Ofsted following two years of huge changes

The committee of parents said it placed a huge emphasis on listening to needs of parents and working with the local community to make the pre-school even more family focused

Thursday, 2nd July 2020, 11:28 am
Updated Thursday, 2nd July 2020, 11:30 am
Harbury Pre-School has received an 'Outstanding' rating from Ofsted.
Harbury Pre-School has received an 'Outstanding' rating from Ofsted.

Delighted staff at Harbury Pre-School said they feel like they have 'won gold at the Olympics' after being awarded the highest mark by Ofsted following huge changes.

The pre-school has been in Harbury since 1972, but two years ago it was facing some business challenges.

The committee of parents, led at the time by chair Karena Ellis-Greenway, said it placed a huge emphasis on listening to needs of parents and working with the local community to make the pre-school even more family focused.

This included changes such as extending the hours, extra fundraising to generate improvements to resources and the building, as well as a continued focus on high quality teaching.

Catherine Kilbey took over the day-to-day running of Harbury Pre School in January 2018.

After a significant effort of transformation over the last couple of years, Harbury Pre-School was recently rewarded with the best accolade they could have wished for – an 'Outstanding' Ofsted rating.

Current committee chair Kate Holliday said: "Obtaining an Ofsted Outstanding rating is a huge achievement for any pre-school these days, but for Harbury Pre-School this felt like winning gold at the Olympics after all of the changes it has gone through in the last two years.

"It is testament to the hard work of Catherine and her team Anne, Deborah, Emma, Sophia and Vonnie, that we were able to achieve an 'outstanding' pre-school."

The Ofsted report praised the pre-school's management and staff, saying: "‘The manager and staff are extremely passionate about the work that they do. They know each child very well in this inclusive setting.

"They ensure that all children receive the right support early to help to narrow any gaps in their development so that they quickly catch up."

The report went on to say: "‘Children are thriving in this preschool. Staff are kind, warm and welcoming towards children.

"This helps them to feel safe and quickly settle into their day. The curriculum is very well-planned and ambitious to meet the current needs of the children attending.

"Children receive a very high quality of education. Staff have a clear understanding of each child's learning needs.

"Accurate assessments of their development are used routinely to plan precisely for what they want children to achieve next.

"Parents regularly receive these detailed plans for activities which show what the staff intend for children to learn. Parents say that these plans help them to talk with their children about what they have learnt."

The pre-school is open five days a week during term time from 8.30am -3.30pm and still has places available from September 2020. More information can be found at www.harburypre-school.org.uk