There are now more childcare providers in Swindon being rated 'Outstanding' than ‘Requires improvement’ by Ofsted, according to the latest UK league tables.

Nurseries, preschools and childminders across the UK are regularly inspected and graded by education watchdog Ofsted in the same way that schools are, and these ratings can influence where parents send their children.

'Outstanding' is the top rating a childcare provider can receive, followed by 'Good', 'Satisfactory/Requires improvement', and 'Inadequate'.

Of the 51 nurseries and preschools in the Swindon area inspected in either 2022 or 2023, 40 are currently rated as ‘Good’ by Ofsted.

But eight were rated as 'Outstanding' in every single area rated by Ofsted, which includes overall effectiveness, quality of education, behaviour and attitudes, personal development, effectiveness of leadership and management, and safeguarding.

Only one active Swindon childcare provider inspected by Ofsted in the last two years was given an overall rating as 'inadequate'.

However, the latest league table data released by the UK Government does not include providers which were last inspected in 2021 or earlier.

So in no particular order, here are the best and worst Swindon nurseries and preschools that have been rated by Ofsted in the last two years.

It should be noted that childminders, although they are a childcare provider, are not included in this list.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Eight nurseries and preschools in Swindon have been rated 'Oustanding' in the last two years.Eight nurseries and preschools in Swindon have been rated 'Oustanding' in the last two years. (Image: Getty Images)

The best and worst nurseries and preschools in Swindon right now

All of the following childcare providers have been rated 'Oustanding' in every area in either 2022 or 2023.

  • Windmill Hill Day Nursery, Whitehill Way, Swindon, SN5 6NX. Inspected in November 2022. This nursery offers up to 121 places and has improved from 'Good' to 'Oustanding'.
  • Coleview Preschool, Towcester Road, Swindon, SN3 4AS. Inspected in June 2022. This preschool offers up to 40 places and has remained 'Oustanding'.
  • Imagination Childcare Ltd, Moredon Childrens Centre, Montrose Close, Swindon. Inspected in March 2023. Improved from 'Good' to 'Outstanding'
  • Arc All Aboard Nursery, Headlands Trading Estate, Swindon, SN2 7JQ. Inspected in June 2022. This nursery offers up to 12 places and has improved from 'Requires Improvement' to 'Outstanding'.
  • Goddard Park Day Care Centre, Welcombe Avenue, Swindon, SN3 2QN. Inspected in August 2022. This daycare offers up to 84 places and has improved from 'Good' to 'Oustanding'.
  • The Co-Operative Childcare Walcot, Shrewsbury Road, Swindon, SN3 3AH. Inspected in May 2023. This provider offers up to 63 places and has improved from 'Good' to 'Oustanding'.
  • Sparklers Pre-school, Pepperbox Hill, Swindon, SN5 5DP. Inspected in February 2023. This preschool offers up to 20 places and has improved from 'Good' to 'Oustanding'.

The only childcare provider (excluding childminders) which has been rated as 'Satisfactory/Requires Improvement' in Swindon in the last two years is Tick Tock Playgroup in Hall Close, Wroughton.

The playgroup, which caters to up to 60 children, was last inspected in October 2023 where it was rated 'Requires Improvement', and further concerns were raised to Ofsted in January 2024.

"Since the OFSTED inspection, our new management team alongside our hard-working and dedicated early years practitioners have been working hard to make improvements in the identified areas," said a spokesperson for the group.

"This has included working closely with the EY team from Swindon Borough Council who are supporting us. A recent visit from one of the Swindon Early Years Consultants was very positive and we were pleased with the feedback we received about some of the changes we have introduced."

81 other childcare providers in Swindon failed to reach the top mark, but received either 'Good' in every area or a mixture of ratings in each assessed area.