About Us

Meet The Team

Embsay-with-Eastby Pre-School Playgroup’s team has a wealth of experience and qualifications!

We are proud that all sessions are led by our fully qualified leaders, each of whom have experience in caring for children, as well as holding relevant academic qualifications. All of our staff are dedicated and friendly and always make sure that the children and their families are at the centre of what they do. We maintain a high ratio of adults to children, with at least 1 adult to 8 children, (over 3 years) and 1 adult to 4 children, (under 3 years). This means we can pay individual attention to promoting your child’s development, learning and care.

Left to right: Helen Mitchell, Judith Robinson, Judy Hirst, Emma Cranston, Kazia Hutchinson, Gill Pennett, Grace Hill and Helen Burns

Our Manager is Judith Robinson. Judith has a BA (Hons) Degree in Early Years and has been awarded Early Years Professional Status. Judith has been involved with the Pre-School for over 20 years, as a member of the management committee, play leader, administrator and as our manager.  Judith has also been a Lead Practitioner for North Yorkshire Early Years.

Our Deputy Managers are Emma Cranston and Grace Hill.

Emma Cranston has been with the Pre-School since April 2005 and has completed a Foundation Degree in Early Years.

Kazia Hutchinson joined us in December 2016 and has a Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Workforce (EYE).

Helen Burns joined us in January 2017 and is very experienced in working with young children and is dedicated and enthusiastic.  Helen is working towards her Level 2 in childcare, learning and development.

Gill Pennett joined us in October 2019 as an Out of School Co-Leader.  Gill is a Higher Level Teaching Assistant with many years Primary Education experience and is skilled in many forms of art and crafts.

Judy Hirst has been a volunteer whilst completing her Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Workforce and has now joined us as a practioner.  Judy has also been Chairperson so has a huge amount of knowledge and experience of running a not-for-profit Pre-school.

Helen Mitchell joined the team in October 2020. Helen has a Level 3 in Early Years and Education and has run her own nursery for a lot of years

Naila Khatoon has recently joined our team in 2021 after working at a day nursery for 14 years. Naila has a Level 3 in Children and Young Peoples Workforce and has previous experience of being a Room Leader and 3rd in charge of a busy setting.

Wishing Grace all the best for her maternity leave. Look forward to hearing when baby arrives.

All staff have paediatric first aid training which is renewed every 3 years.  The team also attend regular training courses, for example various Safeguarding topics, Food Hygiene, Health and Safety, Prevent and British Values, etc. which enables them to keep informed with new legislation and to maintain their continued professional development.  All the team attend regular update meetings with regard to legislation, closing the gap, SEND meetings, to ensure we provide for the best outcomes for ALL children.

Ofsted found our staff team to be…

highly competent and well-qualified, and that reflects in the superb quality of teaching, which is outstanding. They use their excellent knowledge of teaching to support children …

We were delighted with this judgement and continue to work hard to improve the standard of provision that we offer.

All staff members are also subject to an Enhanced Criminal Record check and thorough the Disclosure and Barring Service before working with the children unsupervised.