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Nursery Schools and Baby Nurseries

CHOOSING A NURSERY

from the National Day Nurseries Association

1. Always ensure that the nursery you choose is registered with Ofsted in England, the Care and
Social Services Inspectorate in Wales or the Scottish Commission for the Regulation of Care in
Scotland. The registration certificate should be displayed together with a current certificate of
insurance at all times.
2. Does the nursery belong to a professional organisation such as National Day Nurseries
Association (NDNA), keeping it informed of current issues?
3. You should ask to see a copy of the most recent inspection report highlighting the quality of the
provision and the appropriateness of equipment and facilities. All nurseries inspected in Scotland,
Wales or England will have an inspection report which shows the gradings and recommendations
and/or actions for further improvement. Nurseries in Scotland that provide free pre-school places
are also inspected by HM Inspectorate of Education (HMIE). You can judge the nurseries capacity
to improve by asking the nursery manager and/or staff how they have addressed these actions.
4. Has the nursery gained any awards of excellence, e.g. NDNA’s e-Quality Counts or Quality
Counts?

5. Is there a safe and clean outside play area? Is the interior bright, warm, clean, well decorated
and welcoming? Is the equipment good quality, clean, safe and appropriate?
6. What sort of meals are provided and at what time? Is the food fresh? Can they provide for
special diets? Are the menus changed on a regular basis? Can parents provide input for these
menus?
7. Do the children in the nursery look happy and well occupied? Are the children using a variety
of equipment and are staff involved with their play? Are children able to access their own toys
and equipment? How will staff accomodate your child’s interests?
8. Are the staff happy, relaxed, well presented, calm and confident?
9. Ask about the staff to children ratios, how does the nursery ensure that the children are cared
for safely, both in the nursery and on outings?

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