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Spalding nursery staff celebrating big win

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Staff at a Spalding nursery are celebrating after winning a prestigious award.

Bebright Preschool owners Laura Spillett and Stephanie Barrett are over the moon to have received the Lincolnshire County Council’s Silver Caring 2 Learn Award.

The council has created the awards to celebrate nurseries and schools who promote wellbeing and nurture vulnerable children and young people so that they achieve their full potential.

Laura Spillett and Stephanie Barrett from BeBright Nursery with their award
Laura Spillett and Stephanie Barrett from BeBright Nursery with their award

Former reception teachers Mrs Spillett and Mrs Barrett founded the school in 2018. They were inspired to leave primary education as they felt they could make a difference to preschool after seeing children arrive at school unable to form friendships.

The pair and their team have demonstrated their commitment to education and wellbeing over the last year by starting up their own foodbank along with supporting youngsters who have arrived feeling anxious.

Mrs Spillett said: “We are over the moon to have received this award.

“We started our training last spring and in the middle of this the pandemic hit.”

Over the last year the owners and their team have undergone additional training for supporting emotional wellbeing and how to support the whole family.

They have also looked at wellbeing and have introduced yoga after lunchtimes.

The preschool has also purchased a greenhouse, named Rainbow’s End, after spotting a need.

Mrs Spillett said: “In Spalding you have to get referred to use it and sometimes that process can deter people so we decided to do our own.

“We get through £100 worth of food each month. We probably have eight or ten families that would be regular users but maybe a couple of families that take a couple of tins.

“We had a feeling that there was a need for this and it was something that we really wanted to do. We don’t want any family to feel that there wasn’t anywhere for them to turn for support.”

The team, who say the food bank is open to all their families and also place education materials in there, have also undergone training to provide emotional support support for families and signpost them.

Part of the award also included training to support children through anxiety - which came in useful when youngsters started preschool last year.

Mrs Spillett said: “When our children started in September because of lockdown and not being able to go out of the house or see families, some were incredibly anxious.”

She said that the team have various strategies for dealing with anxiety such as validating their feelings and relaxation exercises.

Mrs Spillett said: “If a child is not calm or happy they are not ready to learn. One of the most important things is to support their wellbeing.”

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