Monthly Archives: January 2011

Planning, what planning ??

As part of our initial preparations for West End, we were required to submit a business plan which showed a gradual increase in numbers. We staffed accordingly, assuming that there would be a slow growth over the next year. What did we know?? Suddenly the phone is ringing off the hook, prospectuses are flying off the shelf and parents are knocking at the door, having a quick look round and filling in application forms there and then. Every day seems to bring more children. Hurrah!

Well we saw some of this coming and recruited our next member of staff a few weeks back but she had to give notice and so will be with us in a couple of weeks. In the meantime we need someone to look after lots of children next week, and a cook!

And we can’t really borrow anyone from the other nurseries – they are heaving too.  Where did all these children come from all of a sudden?

2 urgent job ads have been placed this morning. Anybody know a good cook in the West End area?


You would think I had learned my lesson by now – always check what they are going to print. As usual, the telephone interview caught me on the hop and I suppose it is quite flattering to be contacted by a reporter for my comments but I was guarded and stricly factual in my responses.

I first viewed the article on-line here – Nursery-chain-fills-Paint-Pot

I immediately spotted several factual innacuracies which I was ok to let pass, but then I read this –

“Owners David and Anna Wright were approached by the city council last year about running a nursery from the former Kings Primary School site.”

NO WE WEREN’T!! I did not say these words. We were approached by a church about running the nursery. It would be illegal for Southampton city council to approach us without going through proper process. The new nursery is not in Southampton anyway, it is just outside and thus comes under Hampshire County Council. 

The reporter obviously typed her notes after the interview and confused some of the points. You can see where misquotes occur can’t you?

So hopefully no one will spot this error and we will just live with the positive publicity. I have sent an email to Southampton apologising,  just in case anyone does question me.

Next time I will ask to read the article before it is printed!!


Do an online search on any early years / primary or indeed secondary educational publications site and the chances are you will find resources specifically written on how to handle/deal with or tackle boys and their behaviour – there is nothing equivalent for girls.

Boys then must be a very strange and difficult minority group. Why are they such a challenge? and why, by implication, are girls assumed to be “normal” in terms of their conformance?

Could it have anything to do with the fact that 98% of the workforce is female? Might it be a “one size fits all” education system where teaching is primarily didactic and teaching styles mostly auditory and visual?

There are titles dealing with superhero play, gun play, rough and tumble, wrestling – will these destroy life as we know it?! Would any nursery survive these “evil” male pursuits?!

Speaking as a former boy myself, we did all these and more – and survived, turning into reasonably well adjusted adults. We also climbed trees, cycled to the beach on our own for the day, spent most of the summer in the local woods and shot arrows at each other.  Along the way we also learned to socialise, to read and write and how to relate to the World around us.

It seems quite sad to me that we now have to teach practitioners how to relate to boys and how to meet their needs. It is also a sad reflection on modern society that there are less and less opportunities for challenge, risk taking and developing independence skills.

I don’t have any answers but I do think that things might be different if the balance of men and women in the workforce was more equal and if our society was less paranoid and risk averse.