A NURSERY has been told it must improve after Ofsted inspectors found young children left to wander between activities and safety hazards in the play area.

Archway Nursery School on Hyde Farm in Blandford Forum have been downgraded from ‘good’ to ‘requires improvement’ in the recent report.

Leaders at the nursery have said the outcome is ‘disappointing’ and that a detailed plan is being introduced to ensure positive changes.

Inspectors for the education watchdog acknowledged that children arrive happy and settle well, forming ‘warm relationships’ with staff and make friends.

Children choose freely to read books, construct models or investigate sensory toys however, the quality of staff’s interactions is ‘variable’.

The report said: “Some younger children wander between activities, and they do not all receive meaningful interaction from staff to help them learn more.”

However, inspectors praised the work of other staff members: “Some staff, who are more skilled, provide challenges to build on children's learning.

“For example, they help older children to recognise numerals, to count in sequence and to explore letter names and sounds.

“They create experiments for children to explore speed in a car racing competition.

“Toddlers play games to learn new words.

“These more positive interactions engage children and help them to learn more.”

The report also said forest school activities are planned to allow children to learn in a natural environment and toddlers dance excitedly to music to energise after sleeping.

Staff usually maintain safe and secure environments however they do not monitor the condition of all outdoor wooden structures to ensure it does not present risk of injury.

Inspectors found some structures had screw heads protruding which could cause injury to the children.

Vicki Sedgwick, regional operational manager, said: “The team at the nursery, and those supporting the nursery closely, are all committed to providing a safe and consistent learning environment for our families.

“I’m honoured to work for a nursery group who are always striving for improvement and believe that under new management, the nursery will go from strength to strength.”