Mini Me's Nursery and Pre-School in East Finchley takes Ofsted to tribunal

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A nursery that has received complaints about its childcare provision has taken Ofsted to a tribunal for removing it from its list of registered education providers.

The independent education regulator cancelled Mini Me’s Nursery and Pre School’s registration after a series of inspections which found it was breaching the Early Years Foundation Stage Statutory Framework (EYFS).

Ofsted carried out the inspections after a receiving a complaint raising a number of concerns with the nursery, based in Fallows Court, East Finchley, in February last year.

These included the lack of suitability checks for staff, lack of qualifications and heating, as well as the number of unsupervised visitors and confusion over the nursery’s management.

When Ofsted inspected the nursery in March 2013 it found staff had not had a suitability check, and the nursery was temporarily closed.

Following two further visits later that month, Ofsted made the decision to suspend the registration of the nursery because it believed children were at potential risk of harm as a result of the breaches.

In a statement on Ofsted’s website, it states: “These breaches related to unsafe recruitment of staff, lack of suitability checks, risks on the premises and lack of overall knowledge of EYFS.”

The suspension was lifted three months later after the provider took “appropriate action” to minimise the risks, but Ofsted continued to monitor the nursery - and in August and September more complaints were lodged.

An inspector visited the site again and found further breaches of the EYFS surrounding the safe recruitment of staff, the stability of the management and their knowledge of EYFS.

As a result, a decision was taken to cancel Mini Me’s registration with Ofsted.

In the online statement, Ofsted said: “At this time insufficient action has been taken to secure and sustain compliance with EYFS and further breaches have been identified relating to welfare requirements relating to learning and development, supervision, attendance registers, failure to identify and minimise risks, failure to meet needs of children with special educational needs and management of existing injuries.”

Mini Me’s objected to the decision to cancel its registration but the objection was dismissed.

Mini Me’s then appealed to an independent external tribunal, the Health, Education and Social Care First-tier Tribunal, which heard the case this week.

A report outlining the result of the tribunal is expected to be published within ten days.

A spokeswoman for Ofsted said: “In relation to the nursery, Ofsted can confirm that it has served a notice to cancel the provision. The provider has appealed and the case is currently with the tribunal. As a result it is still a registered setting whilst the tribunal is ongoing.”

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