School etc

Brunswick Nursery School

Brunswick Nursery School
Young Street

phone: 01223 508790

headteacher: Mrs Amanda Bannister


school holidays: via Cambridgeshire council

82 pupils aged 3—4y mixed gender

35 boys 43%


45 girls 55%


Last updated: June 19, 2014

Nursery — LA Nursery School

Education phase
Establishment type
LA Nursery School
Establishment #
OSGB coordinates
Easting: 546218, Northing: 258673
GPS coordinates
Latitude: 52.207, Longitude: 0.13841
Accepting pupils
3—5 years old
Census date
Jan. 16, 2014
Ofsted last inspection
Sept. 19, 2012
Region › Const. › Ward
East of England › Cambridge › Petersfield
Urban > 10k - less sparse

rooms to rent in Cambridge

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  20. 0.9 miles Sedley Infant School CB13PZ
  21. 0.9 miles St Pauls CofE VA Primary School CB21HJ (197 pupils)
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List of schools in Cambridge

School report

Brunswick Nursery School

Young Street, Cambridge, CB1 2LZ

Inspection dates 19–20 September 2012
Overall effectiveness This inspection: Outstanding 1
Previous inspection: Outstanding 1
Achievement of pupils Outstanding 1
Quality of teaching Outstanding 1
Behaviour and safety of pupils Outstanding 1
Leadership and management Outstanding 1

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is an outstanding school.

The school has sustained very successfully all
High-quality leadership, monitoring,
Staff ensure that the children’s experiences
Teaching shows excellence in the ways it
aspects of excellence identified at its last
inspection, when it was also judged
management and governance ensure
excellent teamwork and consistent
approaches to teaching and care which are
practised by all staff. This enhances
significantly the children’s learning and
are very well promoted through play and
centred wholly on their needs and interests.
This very securely underpins the children’s
learning and development.
enables children to become well socialised,
able to develop independence and explore
through a rich range of activities entirely
appropriate to their age.
Excellent assessment is focused firmly on
The school’s continuous drive for
Children’s outstanding achievement and rapid
There is a very strong emphasis on children’s
day-by-day observations which are the basis
of first-class planning
improvement includes refining its assessment
systems to ensure an even closer match with
new national approaches, and to increase the
involvement of children’s families.
progress is secured by the ways staff help
them to prepare for their work and play.
personal and social development which
results in their outstanding behaviour and
strong understanding of being safe.
Inspection report: Brunswick Nursery School, 19–20 September 2012 2 of 10

Information about this inspection

  • The inspection took place during the first week in which almost all children started attending
    the school for the first time. During the previous two weeks the staff had undertaken a series
    of home visits to get to know the children and their families, and to help them to understand
    each individual child’s needs.
  • During the inspection, the key focus was to help the children settle into school. All activities
    were designed specifically to start the process of assessing and recording individual children’s
    learning and development at the start of the school year.
  • The inspector made eight separate observations totalling some four hours. Two joint
    observations were undertaken with senior leaders.
  • All teachers, nursery nurses, key workers and support staff were seen working with the
    children. Sessions of the breakfast and after school club were also observed. Opportunities
    were taken throughout the inspection to talk with children and their parents and carers.
  • The inspector looked at a wide range of school documents including: development plans;
    policies; self-evaluation reports; monitoring files; safeguarding and curriculum materials; and
    information for parents and carers. Governing body documentation was examined, including
    the headteacher’s reports to the governing body and other reviews of school performance.
  • Discussions were held with the headteacher, the senior teacher (who is also the special
    educational needs coordinator) and other teachers, nursery nurses, key workers, teaching
    assistants, office staff, representatives of the governing body, a visiting educational
    psychologist and a representative of the local authority.
  • Telephone conversations were held with representatives of the school’s education partners,
    including a representative of Cambridge University’s Faculty of Education, and a special
    educational needs coordinator from the school’s partner cluster of nursery schools.
  • The inspector took account of the 16 responses to the online questionnaire (Parent View), and
    spoke individually with many parents and carers during the course of the inspection.

Inspection team

Michael Miller, Lead inspector Additional inspector
Inspection report: Brunswick Nursery School, 19–20 September 2012 3 of 10

Full report

Information about this school

  • This is a smaller-than-average nursery school taking children from all over Cambridge City.
  • Almost all children only attend the school for the three terms of the Nursery Year. They attend
    five sessions per week, either mornings only, afternoons only or half the week full-time. The
    school has places for 80 children. At the time of the inspection a few who had registered had
    still to start school but were due to do so later in the week.
  • In addition to the 15 free hours, the school offers a limited number of extra chargeable hours,
    for children on the school roll, through Brunswick Integrated Care (known as BIC). This is
    managed by the governing body and includes a breakfast and after-school club. During the
    school day, all BIC activities are integrated fully with children’s normal activities and work.
  • The large majority of children are of White British heritage; the proportion from other ethnic
    backgrounds, or who speak English as an additional language, is broadly average.
  • The proportion of disabled children and those who have special educational needs, including
    those supported by early years action plus or with a statement of special educational needs, is
    average. These children’s needs include: speech, language and communication difficulties;
    autistic spectrum disorder; hearing impairment; and physical disability.
  • There are currently no children for whom the school receives the pupil premium.
  • The school currently holds the Investors in People and Healthy Eating awards.
  • The headteacher has been in post for four years.

What does the school need to do to improve further?

  • Refine the school’s systems for the assessment of children’s progress, and maintain the
    highest levels of challenge for each individual child, by:

extending the use made of the regular observations and recording of each individual

child’s learning by collating these increasingly closely with the new national

statements concerning each child’s expected development

encouraging more parents and carers to contribute to their children’s learning journey

‘Year Books’ by including personal, family observations and photographs relating to

their children’s learning and development at home.

Inspection report: Brunswick Nursery School, 19–20 September 2012 4 of 10

Inspection judgements

The achievement of pupils is outstanding
  • There is a plaque in the school’s garden which states: ‘Recognise all who stand in this place,
    the opportunity to recapture through your children every childhood pleasure, discovery and
    joy, for in this place such memories are truly reborn.’ This ethos and philosophy helps
    explain why children achieve so well at the school.
  • School data, from accurate and extensive assessments, show that most children enter the
    school with levels of knowledge and skills which are broadly in line with those expected for
    their age.
  • Most children make significant, rapid and sustained progress to reach levels of development
    well above those expected for their age by the time they transfer to the Reception classes
    in other schools. Elements, such as their progress in mark making and the development of
    a love of books, prepare them exceptionally well for writing and reading work.
  • The range of languages spoken by staff aids significantly the ability of children for whom
    English is an additional language to engage with adults and make excellent progress. Staff
    show a natural flair for being able to communicate with children and set them at their ease.
  • Discussions with staff and the parents of disabled children and those who have special
    educational needs show they feel supported well. They appreciate the outstanding progress
    that their children make because of the expert provision and the experience of the staff.
    Such children are monitored consistently by their teachers and key workers. A visiting
    educational psychologist praised the school for its commitment to providing the best
    possible opportunities for children to make sustained progress.
  • Staff ensure that fun in learning is a natural, everyday factor in enabling the engagement of
    children in activities. Even though children were in their first days of starting school, they
    were making excellent progress in the development of their dispositions and attitudes to
  • During the inspection, a full range of ‘free-flow’ activities was on offer, across both inside
    and outside environments; this enabled real excitement in learning. All children were
    enabled to sample experiences covering all aspects of their expected learning and
    development. This also reflected the school’s strong focus on ensuring equality for all.
  • Children profit immensely from every opportunity not only to show their individuality but
    also to take risks in exploration and discovery, whether making a chute from bamboo
    sections to test scientifically toy racing cars, exploring flora and fauna with magnifying
    glasses or making friends with the school’s rabbit.
  • Staff maintain a constant dialogue with the children. This enables the seamless promotion
    of: children’s speaking and listening skills; their personal, social and emotional
    development; a sense of community and care for others; the use of language for
    communication and thinking; the application of exploration and investigation skills;
    children’s use of equipment and materials; and the development of their imaginative play.
The quality of teaching is outstanding
  • As one parent wrote, ‘The staff do a fabulous job, and I’ve learnt a great deal about my
    child due to their help.’ This encapsulates the overwhelming response of parents and carers
    to the quality of teaching at the school.
Inspection report: Brunswick Nursery School, 19–20 September 2012 5 of 10
  • Teaching and assessment are exceptional because staff use their daily observations of the
    children to build extremely effectively on the children’s experiences and contributions.
  • An important focus of the school’s further development of teaching and activity planning is
    linked to enhancing the rich opportunities for extending children’s learning. The school is
    aiming to achieve this through fine tuning the ways it assesses children’s progress.
  • Teachers are currently working on refining the school’s assessment systems to take specific
    account of the new national statements
    concerning each child’s expected development.
  • Staff are taking a practical approach to their review of assessment strategies to ensure that
    they maintain an effective approach to challenging children. They are aware of the
    importance of meeting accurately the needs of children who may be at the lower, middle or
    higher ends of the new national bands for assessing children’s development in the Early
    Year Foundation Stage.
  • The impact of the tracking and planning for disabled children and those who have special
    educational needs, or for whom English is an additional language, is excellent. This is not
    only because such children are enabled to be integrated fully into the school’s life and work,
    but also because of the high quality of their individual education plans.
  • Teachers and key workers alike contribute very well to assessments, and information for
    parents and carers, through the children’s Learning Journey ‘Year Books’. Discussions with
    parents and carers show these records are valued highly. The school encourages parents
    and carers to enrich these ‘Year Books’ by contributing their own family pages and entries,
    but relatively few choose to do so in practice.
  • Resources are of high quality and used very effectively. The outside area provides a highly
    stimulating oasis for the children. It is packed full of interest from the covered sandpit
    through the textured, sensory pathways to the climbing rock and decking space. It is
    designed for all-year-round use and teaching, even in inclement weather.
  • Families are encouraged to become involved actively in their children’s learning, not least
    through activities such as the annual, and much anticipated, ‘pyjama party’. In this, whole
    families, including siblings, explore books together, and parents and carers can explore
    ways to help their children with general reading and literacy development.

Children’s spiritual and cultural development is fostered very well. This is achieved through

artwork, such as the totem pole in the garden representing the wildlife after which each key
worker group is named. Children also enjoy the wonder of visiting local building sites,
growing produce on the school allotment, and the excitement of visiting a local fire station.

Such activities extend very well the children’s general experience of the world around them.

The behaviour and safety of pupils are outstanding
  • There is a consistent and sensitive approach to behaviour management which ensures that
    staff have the highest expectations of children’s behaviour. Children respond quickly to this,
    right from their first day at school. A compassionate approach by staff helps reinforce
    children’s proper understanding of right and wrong from their very first experiences at the


From September 2012, the prime areas are communication and language, physical development and personal, social

and emotional development. The specific areas are literacy, mathematics, understanding the world and expressive arts

and design.

Inspection report: Brunswick Nursery School, 19–20 September 2012 6 of 10


  • Children settle quickly into life at school because it works closely with families to manage
    separation arrangements at the start of sessions. Parents and carers are encouraged to
    stay and play with their children, but subtly withdraw as their children embrace school life.
  • An extensive programme of home visits during the first two weeks of the autumn term not
    only help staff to get to know the children and their needs but also help families prepare
    their children well for school. As one girl said to her teacher on her first morning, ‘You came
    to my house!’ This enables the children to feel safe and secure right from the start.
  • Behaviour and safety are outstanding because children develop self-confidence, are enabled
    to socialise very well, and show consistently high levels of concentration throughout the
    day. Consequently, some do become tired at times; staff deal with this sensitively and
    children respond very positively.
  • Staff make good use of simple tools, such as sand timers, to ensure that children develop
    the concept of sharing and taking equal turns during activities. At times, children showed
    great fascination with the sand timers themselves, captivated by their working. Extended
    concentration was also seen when children were fishing with magnetised rod and line. This
    activity was also good for their physical coordination.
  • Children’s spiritual and social development is particularly strong and promoted well through
    the consistent encouragement of their curiosity, respect and care for each other. As another
    parent wrote to the school at the end of the last academic year: ‘Thank you for being a
    second home for my children. They feel loved, happy, confident and safe.’
The leadership and management are outstanding
  • All parents and carers responding to the online questionnaire, and those spoken with during
    the inspection, had no hesitation in recommending the school because of the high quality of
    its leadership and management. The headteacher sets a very fine example, and is
    instrumental in facilitating the firm foundations upon which the school continues to build
    the high-quality teamwork necessary to sustain its outstanding capacity for further
  • Staff receive justified praise for the excellent information provided for families, the value of
    the home visits, the quality of induction for the children and the high quality of the school’s
    ethos and environment. Families appreciate that such aspects do not happen overnight but
    are the result of continuous hard work on the part of the staff and governing body.
  • Joint observations during the inspection show that the senior leadership team has an
    excellent understanding and appreciation of the quality of teaching and learning.
    Discussions with staff show thoroughly professional levels of self-evaluation and self-
    criticism; this reflects the constructive impact of the school’s performance management.
  • Professional development is focused pertinently on teaching and learning. Staff are involved
    in a wide range of courses and training related to the Early Years Foundation Stage,
    including up to higher degree level.
  • There are strong links with Cambridge University, and discussions with a representative of
    the Faculty of Education show the school is held in very high regard. Staff and children
    have been the subject of a project relating to the development of creativity in the early
    years. This has been completed and is about to be disseminated widely by the university,
    with the continuing participation of the school and its staff.
Inspection report: Brunswick Nursery School, 19–20 September 2012 7 of 10
  • Discussion with another education partner, from the county’s cluster of nursery schools,
    confirmed the school’s strong influence in the field of special educational needs. The advice
    given and professionalism shown by the special educational needs coordinator is much
  • The school’s arrangements for safeguarding its children, and the practical rigour of these,
    were confirmed during the inspection. Discussions and documentation, as well as practical
    action, risk assessments and day-to-day health and safety monitoring, confirm this.
  • During the past year the local authority has undergone major restructuring regarding its
    advisory services for the Early Years Foundation Stage. Contact with the school during the
    past year has been much more limited than in the past. However, the local authority
    provides satisfactory light touch support for this outstanding school.
  • The governance of the school:
    contributes significantly to the everyday life and work of the school; monitoring visits are
    regular and both written and oral reports to staff are seen as part of a valued partnership
    with the school
    is well informed and makes excellent use of its members’ expertise in support of the school

monitors regularly the impact of teachers’ performance management targets which are

focused on maintaining and developing further the quality of teaching and learning.

Inspection report: Brunswick Nursery School, 19–20 September 2012 8 of 10

What inspection judgements mean


Grade Judgement Description
Grade 1 Outstanding An outstanding school is highly effective in delivering outcomes
that provide exceptionally well for all its pupils’ needs. This
ensures that pupils are very well equipped for the next stage of
their education, training or employment.
Grade 2 Good A good school is effective in delivering outcomes that provide
well for all its pupils’ needs. Pupils are well prepared for the next
stage of their education, training or employment.
Grade 3 Requires
A school that requires improvement is not yet a good school, but it
is not inadequate. This school will receive a full inspection within
24 months from the date of this inspection.
Grade 4 Inadequate A school that requires special measures is one where the school
is failing to give its pupils an acceptable standard of education
and the school’s leaders, managers or governors have not
demonstrated that they have the capacity to secure the
necessary improvement in the school. This school will receive
regular monitoring by Ofsted inspectors.

A school that has serious weaknesses is inadequate overall and
requires significant improvement but leadership and management
are judged to be Grade 3 or better. This school will receive
regular monitoring by Ofsted inspectors.

Inspection report: Brunswick Nursery School, 19–20 September 2012 9 of 10

School details

Unique reference number 110596
Local authority Cambridgeshire
Inspection number 401136

This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.

Type of school Nursery
School category Maintained
Age range of pupils 3–4
Gender of pupils Mixed
Number of pupils on the school roll 72
Appropriate authority The governing body
Chair Joye Rosenstiel
Headteacher Amanda Bannister
Date of previous school inspection 8 July 2010
Telephone number 01223 508790
Fax number 01223 508782
Email address reveal email: off…
Inspection report: Brunswick Nursery School, 19–20 September 2012 10 of 10

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