Evenlode Primary School Penarth where Saplings After School Club is based

The inspectors of the Care Inspectorate Wales have been carrying out the first ever inspection of the relatively new “Saplings After School Club” at Evenlode Primary School in Penarth.

The club – set up in 2016 – is organised for children who attend Evenlode School and is registered to  care for up to 40 children aged from 4 to 12 years of age from 07.30 to o9.00 and from 15.30 to 18:00, Monday to Friday.

Evenlode School

The report on the inspection says “Saplings After School Club delivers a high quality service” ,  provides “a very good range of activities”  and has “quality resources and motivated staff, in a spacious environment”  in which “children are happy and engaged and enjoy their time”.

The report says there is a “Feelings Board” at the club which children ” can enter their name when the arrive and can move their name to a different category during the day “if their feelings change. Any sad/negative feelings are addressed immediately by a staff”

The report notes children contribute their own  ideas to the planning of activities and cite the example of making “slime” –  which they  thoroughly enjoy. There are rewards and recognition for good and helpful behaviour and a “Buddy System” is being set up to support children joining the club at Reception Class level for the first time.

Staff are reported to be enthusiastic, positive and “appear to enjoy their time working at the club”.

However, the inspectors also noted some areas where there is room for improvement at the club

MANAGEMENT RECORDS  were not being kept in accordance with the standards of the line with The Child Minding and Day Care (Wales) Regulations 2010 .

  • Staff files did not contain all the relevant information and documentation required by the regulations.
  • The headteacher of Evenlode  had not kept the Care Inspectorate Wales informed of recent staff changes at the club.

Normally a “Non-Compliance Notice” would have been issued for this by the Care Inspectorate Wales – but inspectors have held off this action in the belief  that the club will “act immediately to rectify the situation”.

CHILD PROTECTION:  The CIW inspectors found there was a  “clear child protection policy in place but the policy has not incorporated any information about “Prevent.” [Prevent is guidance to enable staff to identify and respond to any suspected radicalisation of children] .

LOST CHILD POLICY : Inspectors found the club’s Lost Child Policy did not include the requirement to refer cases of a missing child to the local safeguarding board.

TOILETS:   When inspectors carried out their first visit to Saplings Out of School Club they found that the toilets were clean and of a good standard – but 3 of the 4 girls’ toilets “lacked suitable resources such as toilet paper”.

MANAGEMENT : The report says that management “is generally good but the ‘Responsible Individual’ [i.e. the head teacher]  and the ‘Person In Charge’ [ the person actually running the club on a day-to-day basis and supervising its staff ] are “not experienced in managing a registered child care setting and they needed to have some areas of the regulations and national minimum standards clarified. However, both were keen to engage with the inspection process in order to move the service forward and maintain the high standards they strive to provide. There are clear policies and procedures in place which are detailed and well written.

ACCIDENTS : Inspectors also noted that although accident forms were appropriately completed by staff members, these were not being  signed by parents or carers.

STAFF AND RESOURCES  : Inspectors found that the management of staff and resources “is reasonably effective” and that “all staff had received an appropriate induction and training” but “staff personnel files did not contain the necessary
information required by the regulations “. [All staff had however undergone suitable security checks such as Disclosure and Barring Security checks.] .

Inspectors say that “Overall the after school club is well-managed and provides a high quality service, but attention is needed to ensure all the relevant documentation is made available at future inspections.”


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  1. Caring Mark (aka Mark Foster) says:

    Is the lack of toilet paper in the girls’ toilets designed to get little girls to use the boys’ toilets?

    Is the Feelings Board like something Adolf Hitler and Joseph Goebbels fanatics might have used to achieve their objectives with the Hitler Youth.

    Go on Andrew R.T. Davies make a name for yourself. Work to shut this institution down and become your country’s saviour.

  2. whatsoccurin says:

    How times change!-From 72 to 84 helped as a volunteer with teenage holiday schemes on Gower and in Cornwall run by a Childrens’ Charity -there is no way they would have stood up to this type of scrutiny,in fact they would have fell at the “Health and safety” hurdle, so in fact the holidays, which helped many underprivileged families would not have occurred.

  3. Parent says:

    It is not very surprising that the many positive points from the inspection for Saplings have not been published, instead focusing on toilet paper rather than printing children feeling “valued, safe and happy” or that the feelings board is used to promote “children’s voices” and not to achieve Adolf Hitler objectives. It is highly disappointing that such a high demanding club has not been given the recognition they highly deserve and rather been subjected to such negativity. To get the full inspection, including positive and negative points, as a parent I would highly recommend reading the full inspection report via the CIW website.

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