A NURSERY hit by allegations last year that children were being restrained to chairs for poor behaviour has made improvements according to a new report, however fresh concerns regarding staff checks have been raised.

Nightingale's Pre-School in Penarth was assessed in August 2017 by Care Inspectorate Wales, after concerns were raised by a parent about how children's behaviour was being managed. Inspectors said in their report that members of staff confirmed 'Clippasafe' chair restraints were being used as a means of responding to poor behaviour, however the nursery's owners strongly refuted this claim.

Following the latest inspection, held in November last year, assessors found that all previous causes for concern had now been dealt with at the nursery and that improvements in managing children's behaviour had been made.

However fresh issues were raised regarding pre-employment checks on staff members, as it emerged that references and employment histories had not been filed by Nightingale's when taking on some of their employees.

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks, which are a legal requirement for employees who look after children, are understood to have been carried out for all new starters, however there had been delays with two existing members of staff being re-checked after their clearances had expired.

The nursery was found to be non-compliant with regulation 28 of The Child Minding and Day Care Regulations 2016, with regards to their documentation of employees' work histories. Non-compliance relating to sections 15, 20, 29 and 31 were also identified, however steps to address these were taken by the nursery shortly after the inspection took place.

In summary, the report was broadly positive with regards to the level of care children were now receiving, their relationships with staff and the building's overall cleanliness.

The report's findings state: "Overall, we found that children are settled and have developed good relationships with the staff who look after them.

"Staff are generally able to keep children safe and healthy and ensure that children’s wellbeing is promoted. We found that the nursery is clean, safe and well maintained."

However, there remained questions over the management of Nightingale's, with the report going on to say the quality of leadership needs to "significantly improve."

Owner and manager Selina Thomas said she disputed some of the points raised and questioned whether the report remained relevant, given that the assessment was carried out some time ago.

Mrs Thomas said: "My issue with the report is that it’s not really that relevant any more, given that it’s based on an inspection that was carried out months ago.

“I just look forward to the next time that they come. There’ll be a further inspection within the next 12 months and I want to make clear the changes we’ve made and what a fantastic place this is.

“There were a few points where I said 'that’s not right', but we’ve also had a major staff turnaround lately and have new members of staff bringing in new skills.

“The care of the children is the main thing, and I know that they are all happy here.”