Mitcheldean Early Learners in Gloucestershire has been rated as "Outstanding" across all areas of effectiveness, a significant improvement from its previous rating of "Good". The early learning centre has excelled in providing a unique, child-focused learning experience. This dynamic environment stimulates curiosity, promotes independence, and fosters robust interpersonal relationships.
As per the inspection report, children attending the Mitcheldean pre-school exude enthusiasm and a keen desire to learn. They exhibit excellent behaviour, comprehension of rules, and a palpable curiosity about their surroundings. For example, children show awe and wonder at the metamorphosis of caterpillars into chrysalises.
The children's progression from their individual starting points has been deemed exceptional, attributed to the nurturing environment and well-organised curriculum. The leadership team and staff members have worked tirelessly to create a rich learning environment that fully utilises both indoor and outdoor spaces. The walls of the pre-school are adorned with displays of diversity, literacy, numeracy, and interesting photographs that serve as effective learning resources.
The management team, led by an enthusiastic manager, ensures that the curriculum is consistently reviewed and implemented, promoting the best outcomes for children. This extends to personalised support for each child, fostering development of language skills, mathematical awareness, and a love for books. Two-, three-, and four-year-olds are reportedly confident communicators, able to express their needs and share their ideas.
The manager has introduced innovative methods to instill values of diversity and acceptance. For instance, children await postcards from Paddington's global travels, learn about different cultures, and participate in communal activities with elderly community members.
Children with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities (SEND) are fully integrated and receive exceptional support. Staff collaboratively work with external professionals and implement individual learning plans. Extra funding is utilised judiciously to enhance attendance and procure additional resources for children's progress, particularly in the development of literacy skills.
The early years setting has been lauded for its partnerships with parents, who describe the pre-school team as friendly, supportive, and informative. Parents have been thrilled with their children's progress, regularly participate in events, and collaborate with staff on awareness initiatives, such as oral health.
As for safeguarding, the manager ensures that all staff understand their responsibilities. Regular training sessions, vigilance, and a safe play environment are in place to ensure the welfare of children. The inspection further highlighted the active participation of children in safety and evacuation procedures.
Registered in 1996, Mitcheldean Early Learners operates from purpose-built premises adjacent to the primary school in Mitcheldean. With 26 available places, the centre caters to children aged 2 to 4 and provides free early education for two-, three-, and four-year-olds. The setting employs a team of eight, including six early years qualified staff at level 3. The facility operates from 8.30 am to 3.30 pm, Monday to Friday, during term time.