Hunter Hall Pre-School, (formerly Nutkins Nursery) is available for all children following their third birthday. It is well established at Hunter Hall School and is part of the Foundation Stage Unit, along with the adjoining Reception Class (four to five year olds). It is housed in a converted byre, which is part of the buildings around the central courtyard of the school. We are in a tranquil and beautiful location close to town, the A66 and M6.

The quality of the provision is outstanding. The stimulating indoor and outdoor environments of this well organised community promote high quality learning.(Independent Schools Inspectorate 2011)

An annual review visit by Children's Services from Cumbria County Council in January 2015 and again in November 2016 highlighted the following;

  • Teaching and learning at Hunter Hall Pre-school continues to be outstanding. This is evidenced by high expectations for all children, no matter their starting point
  • Partnership with parents is very good
  • The outdoor environment is used to provide lots of opportunities for children to learn through exploring the world about them and investigating it's similarities and differences
  • The teaching of writing is a significant strength of the Pre-school. The good progress Pre-school children make is reflected in Reception class outcomes, where a number of children have already achieved some early learning goals prior to the end of the EYFS
  • The environment is used effectively to promote children's social, emotional and physical development
  • Robustly involved in schools healthy eating culture
  • Children are actively encouraged, and allowed, to be independent learners
  • Access to children is effectively managed by staff and Pre-school is situated in a secure unit which helps protect children. The staff are knowledgeable and trained in safeguarding and employ robust procedures which ensure children are protected at all times
  • The manager promotes a shared ambition to continually strive for improvement. The manager is an extremely experienced early years teacher and the rest of the Pre-school team are all experienced EYFS pratitioners

Innovative Approach

The innovative approach within our Foundation Stage attracts regular visitors to the unit, where the children learn through play. The choices that they make and the interests they express are used by the staff to plan their learning and development. This has proved to be very effective, and children thrive and develop rapidly.

They enjoy a vibrant, holistic experience in the seven areas of learning within the Early Years Foundation Stage, and also receive specialist French, P.E and singing teaching in term time. The Foundation Stage Unit conversion is designed specifically to the needs of three to five year olds. The facilities are excellent, with a wide variety of learning resources and superbly designed outdoor play areas, surrounded by woodland areas.