‘No immediate threat’ to Warnham Pre-School

JPCT 180714 S14300683x  Warnham Pre-School  -photo Steve Cobb SUS-140718-133913001
JPCT 180714 S14300683x Warnham Pre-School -photo Steve Cobb SUS-140718-133913001

Staff at Warnham Pre-school have assured parents there is ‘no immediate threat’ of closure but admitted ‘money is incredibly tight’ at the charity.

The pre-school, which is based in Warnham Village Hall, was graded ‘Inadequate’ by Ofsted after an inspection in March 2013.

Current manager Steph Richardson assumed her post last June, after the poor result, and the pre-school was marked ‘Good’ by Ofsted after its most recent inspection last month.

The struggles with Ofsted, building work at the village hall and a shortage of funds have proved challenging but Steph is optimistic for the future.

She said: “Money is incredibly tight at the moment, but we have got some fundraising going on in the autumn term.

“We are starting off September on a good footing, much better than in the past, so hopefully we can start clawing back.

“There is no immediate threat. As long as we are breaking even every week we are okay, and we are.”

She also paid tribute to the staff that have helped the pre-school’s rapid improvement.

She added: “We have worked very hard to turn it around, I can’t thank the whole team enough because everybody has worked above and beyond.”

The pre-school is a charity run by a committee of parents and carers.

Paula Lintott, from Warnham, is the mother of a child who attends the pre-school.

She said: “It is supported by friends and family, and there are years when you get the not quite so well off families to support them.

“Being able to walk to the pre-school is much easier than having to drive to Horsham, and lots of us parents went to the play school ourselves when we were younger.

“The children were quite happy - they couldn’t have cared less (about the Ofsted result). They like the staff and were having fun.”

Kelly Allen, whose daughter attends the pre-school, thanked staff, in particular deputy manager Alison Cranford, for the support they have offered her daughter.

She said: “I am just very grateful for everything they have done with Amber, but it is not just Amber - there are other children there with special needs and they have done a fantastic job.

“Alison is absolutely amazing.”