Ofsted: number of ‘inadequate’ nurseries doubles in a year

The Telegraph is reporting that Ofsted figures show more nurseries and childminders are officially underperforming following changes to the way it inspects providers of early years care in England…

The number of nurseries and childminders judged “inadequate” by Ofsted has doubled after inspectors launched a crackdown on poor standards of education in the early years.

More than 1,106 early years providers inspected in the last 12 months have been placed in the watchdog’s lowest category, it emerged, compared with around 500 a year earlier.

Figures show that seven per cent of settings in England were inadequate in the 2012/13 academic year – up from three per cent in 2011/12.

At the same time, the proportion rated good or better has fallen from around three-quarters to two-thirds in the same period.

The move follows a reform of inspections to focus on the extent to which providers focus on basic education for under-fives and pay attention to children’s personal and emotional development.

It followed concerns that too many children were starting full-time school unprepared for the demands of formal education.

But the move has been criticised by the early years groups who accused Ofsted of moving the goalposts without providing appropriate support to nurseries, playgroups and childminders…

Nurseries – like schools – are inspected on a four-point scale: outstanding, good, requires improvement and inadequate.

Ofsted has said that all nurseries and pre-schools in England should be expected to achieve a “good” rating.

Those falling below an acceptable threshold will be given a maximum of two years before being branded “inadequate” – raising the prospect of being de-registered and eventually closed.

It was originally proposed that poor early years providers would be given four years to improve, but this was halved in November amid concerns from parents that the previous plan was too lenient.

More at:  Ofsted: number of ‘inadequate’ nurseries doubles in a year

What impact is this new new inspection approach having on early years settings and practitioners? Is the focus on improving standards welcome? Please share in the comments or on twitter… 

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Categories: Pre-school.


  1. LiterateCynic

    SchoolsImprove By branding more & more schools as poor, govt. believes it will be seen to be being tough. A charade. Clueless!

  2. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove That might be because they’ve moved the goalposts again. Ofsted need schools to fail to justify their own existence.

  3. rene_koglbauer

    SchoolsImprove accountability is good and necessary but no one seems to be thinking about what this does to a community

  4. VictoriaJaquiss

    SchoolsImprove Depends on how you measure them. Might just find out that kids happy, making steady progress. Have to find another scapegoat

  5. looloobyloo

    SchoolsImprove so nurseries are not performing many primaries are not reaching the desired goals, maybe the benchmarks are too high,

  6. marygtroche

    KeithMaxwell21 SchoolsImprove Yes let them play – but it must be in properly run, well maintained, educative and safe environments.

  7. andylutwyche

    sharpeleven SchoolsImprove Private companies performing Ofsted inspections troubling at best. If all schools outstanding they don’t earn

  8. andylutwyche

    slowekingsdown SchoolsImprove They were certainly involved in their development if not. They have made a lot of money out of them too

  9. andylutwyche

    deepends SchoolsImprove Then Ofsted need to be entirely transparent. Currently the waters are murky at best. This Scottish thing creepy!

  10. deepends

    andylutwyche SchoolsImprove yeah watch out for this coming to yr neck of woods thro big lottery better start..its evidence2success rebrand

  11. Value_added

    SchoolsImprove Does this sound proven? Worryingly, Ofsted’s judgement’s are now questionable; just focused on failure. #ofstednotfit

  12. lovemyslk

    SchoolsImprove does anyone really believe that things are declining a the rate made up by Ofsted? No we all know hidden agenda, v sad.

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