I so loved reading Babyrambles post the other day about being inspected by Ofsted, I thought I’d
steal the idea pay homage with my own self-administered inspection of DG Manor. I don’t pull any punches when I’m assessing the local retail industry, so I should excel at assessing myself. Let’s take a closer look at the criteria:
Take necessary steps to safeguard and promote the welfare of children in the setting
Skimming quickly over the day my gas was cut off and various gas-based household appliances declared unsafe, I think I do a reasonable job. I’ve never had to apply more than a Hello Kitty plaster, a kiss, some ‘magic cream’ and an ice-pack, and have only had to visit the Police Station once in their lifetime, so I’d say that’s a definite yes.
Adults looking after children must have appropriate qualifications, training, skills and knowledge
My working life has been dominated by childcare so I’m fairly sure I have the skills and knowledge. Qualifications? Not so much: my degree in Economics, Politics and French has not proved as useful as I thought. And it’s all been on-the-job experience. But let me just say that you can have all the qualifications, training, skills and knowledge in the World and you will still be woefully unprepared for looking after your own children. Trust me on this.
Result: satisfactory. Needs work in some areas.
Children’s behaviour must be managed effectively and in a manner appropriate for their stage of development and particular individual needs
I excel at discipline: every time my children tell me what to do, I do it.
Ensure that adults looking after children, or having unsupervised access to them, are suitable to do so
Lets see: The Mothership has thirty-plus years of hands-on experience raising children, and I turned out OK, so I’d say she is an the very definition of suitability. In fact it would suit me if she took on more childcare. DH had no childcare experience going into parenthood but he has a long career history in mediation so will definitely have the skills necessary to get us all through teenage-hood. I operate a strict more-adults-than-children-where-possible policy and hope to expand on that by having two adults to every child at some point in the future.
Promote the good health of the children, take necessary steps to prevent the spread of infection and take appropriate action when they are ill
I clean them before my mother-in-law of the Health Visitor comes round. And if they are ill, I offer cuddles, the aforementioned ‘magic cream’ and if that doesn’t work, a good glug of Nurofen and a nap usually sorts it.
Result: some retraining required.
Staffing arrangements must be organised to ensure safety and to meet the needs of the children
I think I need to work on my ratios: need more adults than children and evryone’s a winner. Unless you count the dog. In which case, we’re sorted.
Outdoor and indoor spaces, furniture, equipment and toys must be safe and suitable for their purpose
The children have learned to look for dog poo before heading out to the swings, they know never to go near the Oven of Doom when it os on, and they know that they should never climb on the kitchen counters whilst wearing shoes. I am so good at this Ofsteddy stuff.
Plan and organise systems to ensure that every child receives an enjoyable and challenging learning and development experience that is tailored to meet their individual needs
Fortunately LBG goes to Kindergarten three days a week, has dancing on a Monday, ballet and French on a Friday and Daddy at weekends, so I don’t need to worry too much about leaving her in front of the television whilst I blog. The Dimpled Assasin has dancing on Mondays, Gymboree on Tuesdays, nursery on Wednesday and Thursday and Daddy at the weekend, so I only really have to make the effort with her once a week. A bit of playdough and a sit in the Lego box and she’s happy.
Maintain records, policies and procedures required for the safe and efficient management of the settings and to meet the needs of the children
I have two words for you: Baby Book. ‘Nuff said.
Result: it was all going so well.
It’s like they say: you need a licence to drive a car but they’ll let any old fool have a baby….