Customer Success Stories - Footprints Day Nursery
Written By Dr James Huntington
Footprints Day Nurseries are a two nursery group, based in Cheshire, North West England. Established in 2002 it has proved itself as a high quality group, with Ofsted Outstanding ratings at bother nurseries, as well as numerous awards for excellent childcare and commitment to early years. With upcoming plans for an expansion, Footprints use LearningBook as a unique selling point, alongside they’re passionate staff and beautiful locations just outside the Peak District.
We sat down with Rachel, Nursery Manager at Footprints’ Bollington site, to get to know her and discuss the impact LearningBook has had on her nursery.
How long have you been working in early years?
I’ve been an early years professional for around 20 years. I started with Footprints not long after receiving my Level 2 diploma, and I was one of the first nursery nurses to be employed by the company. I’ve come through the company as a nursery nurse, to room leader to nursery manager.
When were you introduced to LearningBook?
LearningBook came in to Footprints during its early stages of development, I’ve seen its beginnings right up to now with its rich number of features.
What problem(s) were you trying to solve when you started using LearningBook?
We needed something to save the staff time and to cut down on paper, ink etc. We found that staff were spending more and more time completing observations and learning journeys rather than engaging with our children and planning their activities to aid development. LearningBook helped boost staff morale, give them more time to focus on the children and we were able to save money. The design of the system also meant we weren’t losing out on the engagement from parents which was a big part of why parents chose us over other nurseries in the local area – we have that family feel.
What have you been able to achieve since using LearningBook?
We were able to focus more on those children who needed the extra support and provision. LearningBook helped us identify where children needed one-to-one support or where staff needed extra training as well.
What is your favourite feature of LearningBook?
The parent portal and app! Having a child of my own in nursery means I can view what he’s up to, his well-being and the achievements he makes. As a manager this is ideal to keep parents engaged and to encourage them to contribute photos from home, as well as comment on assessments we have discussed at Parents’ evenings.
What's the main reason why you recommend LearningBook?
That’s a hard one! The quality of each aspect of LearningBook is great. When I used the system as a nursery nurse it was ideal for taking observations, linking and planning - not to mention the safeguarding aspect. Now as the manager, I can track cohorts, children and groups in lots of different ways to help improve our practice and give children the best outcomes. It feels like each part of the system has been thought out and fitted to the kind of staff that use it day-to-day.