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Children’s centre “pivotal” to the community

Press Release   •   Oct 22, 2012 14:33 BST

Ramsbottom Children’s Centre has been earning high praise from the education watchdog Ofsted.

Inspectors have given the centre an official “good” rating and highlighted a range of services which it said were outstanding.

“The children’s centre plays a pivotal role in its community,” said Ofsted. “The centre is an extremely welcoming place where everyone is treated with consideration and respect.”

Since 2011, the centre has operated from a purpose-built building in the centre of Ramsbottom inCarr Street, with use of rooms in the library opposite and at a number of community venues. It engages with 72% of its catchment area of 802 children.

“The care, guidance and support offered to families are outstanding,” said inspectors. “An effective and co-ordinated approach uses the expertise of a range of specialist providers. The outreach team, in particular, ensures that families most in need of support have access to services they need and often act as advocates on their behalf. The care and support offered to individuals and families at time of crisis are exceptional.”

Ofsted highlighted the help that the centre gave to parents and carers, saying: “Many adults using the children’s centre improve their employability and self-confidence through good parenting programmes.”

Partnership work with health services and housing providers was a strength of the children’s centre. Staff were well qualified, management was good, the centre was well used and excellent value for money, and it has “good” capacity to improve.

As well as the official “good” rating, some aspects were rated as outstanding: keeping children safe and protected, the quality of care offered to families including those in target groups, the way resources were efficiently and effectively managed to meet needs, and the centre’s work with agencies in safeguarding children and vulnerable adults.

Centre leader Paula Cockcroft said: “We are extremely proud of the recognition by Ofsted and would like to thank everybody for their support towards our excellent achievement."

The full report can be read on Ofsted’s website at


Press release issued: 22 October 2012.

Picture attached: Children, parents and staff at Ramsbottom Children’s Centre.