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Following an inspection on 20 and 21 June Ofsted have awarded Carlisle West - Newtown Sure Start Children's Centre an 'Outstanding' rating. The inspectors found that the centre serves its community particularly well, delivering the highest quality services that enhance the lives of the families who live in the community. Provision is excellent, the centre places the highest priority on safeguarding and the care, guidance and support offered to children and their families are exceptional.
Many of the centre users spoke with the inspection team over the two days and the inspectors were 'bowled over' by the passion they showed for the centre and the impact it has had on their lives. Particular progress has been made by centre users for whom English is not their first language, while disabled children and those with special educational needs and their families are particularly well supported. Inspectors highlighted how they "could really see and understand the amazing difference that Newtown Children's Centre is making to families' lives."
The report goes on to say that the people in charge of the children's centre are doing an excellent job and are truly committed to providing an outstanding service that fully reflects the needs and ambitions of the families who use its services. They have a really committed staff and volunteer team who take great pride in their work and have high aspirations.
Children's Services Manager, Barnardo's, Carlisle, Mrs Nicky Robley said: “We are absolutely delighted to receive such a positive Ofsted outcome. The Carlisle West Newtown Centre has only been fully operational from our Shadygrove Road premises since September last year and the staff and team have worked really hard and enthusiastically to make the Centre a warm, welcoming place with a wide range of activities for local children and their families. The report acknowledged the contribution that parents made, in their willingness and keenness to speak to the inspectors. We were overwhelmed and humbled to hear what they had shared.
We have excellent relationships with local partner agencies and would like to thank them for their continued input and support to the Children’s Centre as we truly couldn’t have achieved the outstanding outcome if it hadn’t been for the contribution from partners, parents and their children.”
Deputy Leader of Cumbria County Council, Cllr Stewart Young, said: "This is excellent news and a fantastic achievement for Nicky and her team. I was delighted when the county council was able to secure the premises on Shadygrove Road. The impact of having a presence there has contributed greatly to more positive outcomes for families who use the services provided.
Carlisle West Newtown Sure Start Children’s Centre is planning a celebration event for families who have supported the Children’s Centre and any families new to the Centre from the Newtown area. The event will be held at the Centre on Shadygrove Road, Carlisle on 16th August between 11am and 2pm