The steering group for Yorkshire & Humber region
David Ball – Community matters (Yorkshire)
Ken McArthur – Polly Anna’s Nursery, York
Cath Dunne – Play@Churwell

Met with the Regional Director Nick Hudson, at Ofsted Offices in York on 28th January 2014. Unfortunately due to personal and staff illness Sue Knowles and Claire Brummer were unable to attend. The meeting was very constructive. NH agreed to holding them once a term and with a larger group of delegates to represent the different sectors in early years. We have agreed to meet in June 2014 at a date to be fixed. It is our intention therefore to hold a further open meeting probably at the end of May 2014, this will give the steering group time to meet and agree the agenda items before meeting with NH.

We took 5 priorities to discuss with NH and h8is responses are detailed below.

  1. “One size fits all” does not work in the early years sector.NH felt sure that inspectors do recognise the differences between providers in the PVI sector. He accepts the need for consistency in inspections, and is of the opinion that sampling of reports does uncover inconsistencies. NH claims that Ofsted do work hard to reduce inconsistencies in inspections.
  2. Scheduling Inspections.NH explained the rational surrounding the question of notice of inspections to different types of settings. Essentially there should be no difference, and the move by Ofsted is to shorten the notice period to all settings. But he does agree that all settings/schools/childminders should be operating on a level playing field. NH will clarify the notice periods for all. On the subject of allowing settings to inform Ofsted that the manager was on annual leave he agreed to consider the matter and would respond in due course.After a discussion around triggered inspections NH will issue there guidelines to triggered inspections to clarify their position. But did say that the number of triggered inspections had fallen to a much lower level in the past months and gave the impression that the peak reached in early 2013 would not be repeated.
  3. Appeals procedure.
  4. Flawed InspectionsWe discussed the question of disputed inspections and there publication. Again NH felt there was a need to clarify the time scales and the process whereby settings could raise objections and request that publication of the report be deferred pending a review. However he was very concerned there must be safeguards against rogue settings deferring publication indefinitely.

Childcare providers and workers across England are to be given the opportunity to regularly meet Ofsted officials to air their concerns about the regulator’s approach to inspections.

a90018e1-db55-f06d-824ac4818fe106ab-jpgMany early years providers complain that they have had settings downgraded by Ofsted. Image: Alex Deverill

The regional meetings plan has been committed to by Sue Gregory, director of early childhood at Ofsted, in response to criticism levelled by early years professionals at the regulator over its tougher approach to inspections.

The concerns prompted a series of Big Conversation events in September attended by more than 600 practitioners, parents and providers.

The agreement on the regional events came out of a recent meeting between Gregory, Dee Gasson, principal officer of development in early years at Ofsted, and June O’Sullivan, chief executive of the London Early Years Foundation. It is undecided who will host and chair meetings, but O’Sullivan has volunteered to do the first in London.

– See more at: http://www.cypnow.co.uk/cyp/news/1140273/ofsted-agrees-regional-meetings-childcare-sector?utm_content=#!


List of venues FRIDAY 13TH SEPTEMBER:

Friday 13th September @ 1:30 pm
Hardwick Hall Hotel, Sedgefield, County DurhamTS21 2EH
Please email Jo Verill – jov@ceeda.co.uk

Friday 13th September @ 6:30pm
The Grove, Methodist Hall, Town St, Horsforth, Leeds, West Yorkshire LS18 4RJ
Please email David Ball – david.ball@community-matters.org.uk

Friday 13th September @ 3pm
June O’Sullivan LEYF, 121 Marsham Stret, London, SW1P 4LX
Please contact Jenny- jenny@leyf.org.uk / 02075 923602

Friday 13th September @ 10am – 12am
The Co-operative Childcare, The Hospitium, Valpy Street, Reading, RG1 1AR
Please contact Samantha Irwin – samantha.irwin@thecooperativechildcare.coop

Friday 13th September @ 3.30pm
Naturally Learning Charlestown, The Old Church Hall, Church Road, Charlestown, PL25 3NS
Please email Mandy Richardson – mandy@naturallylearning.co.uk

Friday 13th September 6.30pm – 8.30pm
The Campus, Highlands Lane, North Somerset BS24 7DX
Please email Ellie Frake – ofstedbigconversation@gmail.com


Saturday 14th September @ 10am – 1pm
Kinds alowed, Christie fields, Christie way, Manchester, M21 7QS
Please email Jennie Johnson – jennie.johnson@kidsallowed.com

Saturday 14th September @ 1pm
Child First, Moulton Lodge, Moulton Way North, Northampton, NN37RW
Please contact Tom Shea – tom.s@childfirst.co.uk / 07831 635802

Saturday 14th September @ 3pm – 5pm
Perdiswell Young People’s Leisure Club, Worcester, WE3 7SN
Please contact Penny Webb – pennys.place@hotmail.co.uk

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