Dagenham nursery ‘let children play next to main road’
PUBLISHED: 19:00 10 June 2015 | UPDATED: 12:54 12 June 2015
A tribunal judge has warned the suspension of a Dagenham nursery should continue after unannounced Ofsted inspections found it unsafe for children.
Little Treasures Children’s Day Nursery on Rainham Road North has been operating in the former Wantz library since September 2012.
But soon after it opened it became the focus of concern and had its registration suspended in March, a Care Standards Tribunal heard.
Tribunal judge, Gillian Irving, said fire doors and unfenced play areas next to main roads raised concerns.
Parents and former members of staff made anonymous complaints in November last year and on April 22 Ofsted extended its closure for a further six weeks.
There had been a number of inspections of the nursery, many of them unannounced, and a previous suspension in July 2014 was lifted after three weeks.
Dismissing an appeal against the latest suspension decision, Judge Irving said there were anxieties that children might stray into the path of traffic.
A suggestion that two staff members be placed close to the fire doors “smacked of an impoverished risk assessment”.
“The doors should be alarmed and it is difficult to understand why that solution has not been embraced,” she added.
There was also an on-going issue about the ratio of staff to children at the nursery and there had been “repeated shortages of staff”, the court heard.
Providing children with luminous safety jackets and wrist bands would not deal with the problem.
“The fundamental question of whether, in fact, it is safe for them to play outside does not seem to have been asked”, Judge Irving added, concluding that: “the suspension should continue and the appeal against it must fail”.
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