Fairfield Nursery judged Ofsted Outstanding

Our Fairfield Nursery in Shelf, Halifax, has been judged “Outstanding” in every category by Ofsted. Outstanding is the highest judgment that can be made by an Ofsted inspector and is given only when there is exceptional childcare provision that greatly exceeds national standards. This is the first inspection since we acquired in 2022.

Fairfield is the fourth nursery in the Portland Nurseries group to receive Outstanding in the last two years, following the inspections of Holly Bank in February 2024, Portland House Nursery in 2023 and Harlequin Nursery in 2022, giving testament to the high standards that are set across the group.

The Ofsted inspector observed that “The passionate and skilled staff create an environment where children become inquisitive learners at this welcoming nursery.” and that “There is an open and positive culture around safeguarding that puts children's interests first.”

The Inspector went on to comment on the excellent staff team saying that “Children form strong bonds with staff and show they feel safe and secure....Staff have high expectations of children and are positive role models. Staff plan opportunities for children to remember and talk about what they have been learning. Children confidently share their knowledge with their friends. They are ready for their move on to school.”

Ofsted reported that quality of education and behaviour and attitudes of the children are both outstanding “Children show high levels of concentration and become deeply involved in their learning.” “Children's voices are greatly valued in the nursery. They have lots of opportunities to express themselves and make choices. For example, children answer a daily question. Older children become council members and meet to discuss what activities they would like to see in the nursery. As a result, children show increasingly high levels of confidence in social situations and are excellent communicators.”

The Ofsted inspector went on to praise the leadership “Leaders and managers plan an effective language-rich environment for all children....they have a clear and ambitious vision to ensure children receive the best care and early education. They plan a highly effective curriculum for all children, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). Leaders and managers support children and families even before they start at the nursery. They plan play sessions for the wider community and invite new parents and carers, including grandparents, to baby sensory sessions.”

Nursery Manager Sadie Fox, who began as an apprentice 17 years ago under previous ownership complemented her staff team saying “I am thrilled that Ofsted have recognised what I already know; how passionate and dedicated my staff team are to their roles as early years educators. I am infinitely proud of this achievement and I really appreciate all the support the senior management team at Portland Nurseries has provided over the last 18 months. I care so much for the staff team. They work so hard to deliver the best possible care and education for the children by constantly developing the nursery and keeping our standards high. I’m so fond of all the families who pass through our doors. It’s a fabulous nursery and hopefully this is the first of many Outstanding’s for Fairfield!”

Manging Director Anastasia Murphy said “When we welcomed Fairfield into our group in 2022 we knew we’d acquired a wonderful staff team. They were so receptive to how we, at Portland Nurseries, view quality care and education. They already had high standards and quality foundations, we just supported them to go further, through our focus on staff training and development, and by using our 33 years of experience in the sector. I am immensely proud of all the team and so pleased Ofsted have recognised, not just the wonderful learning that takes place daily, but how proactive our SENCo is; how the children have consistently high levels of respect for others, and most importantly, how all children make excellent progress at Fairfield Nursery.”

Start your child's learning journey today