Hornchurch children centre is rated outstanding

A Hornchurch children’s centre, which supports youngsters with disabilities, has been given full marks by education watchdogs.

Ofsted inspectors said First Step, in Tangmere Crescent, continues to provide an “excellent standard of care and education for children,” and was rated oustanding.

Lead inspector David Thomas Hatchett said the charity’s practices ensured the complex needs of children were met in an exceptionally secure and happy environment.

He said in his report: “Staff are extremely knowledgeable about children’s wide-ranging needs and promote excellent outcomes because of their high-quality provision.”

The report said parents and carers are exceptionally well engaged in almost all parts of the centre’s work.

Other praise came for the outstanding leadership and management, which the report said has helped keep First Step’s effectiveness exemplary.

The report added: “They are unrelenting in their pursuit of excellence and in promoting children’s learning and well-being, despite significant challenges and barriers that many children face.

Most Read

“Given the children’s very diverse needs, exceptional attention is given to making sure children are safe and very well cared for.”

Inspectors gave First Step for every category available, including the capacity to improve; the effectiveness of leadership and management; safeguarding; the quality of Early Years’ Foundation Stage provision; how much children enjoy learning; and how much they develop skills for the future.

Ofsted said further improvements could be made to engage parents in their children’s learning by providing opportunities for them to evaluate and contribute to its policies and curriculum documentation.