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About Rockwood

Rockwood Nursery Buidling









Rockwood is an OUTSTANDING Nursery School, situated in a lovely old Victorian manor house, with fabulous gardens and play area, located on the outskirts of Burnley. You can read about Our History and download booklets written to celebrate events in our past.

We are a popular, well respected, school that supports children, parents, staff and governors working, living and learning together in our local community.  We work strongly as a team, creating a supportive and challenging environment.

"Many parents [said] the school was like a ‘big family’ as reflected by one parent who said, ‘The staff treat the children as if they were their own.’" (Ofsted 2014)

We provide:

  • A safe and secure environment where your children may learn and play;
  • A fully trained, up-to-date, friendly staff (including qualified teachers) to care for your children;
  • A unique, sensory-rich, Victorian building set in extensive grounds;
  • Access to government-funded care of 15 hours per week for 3 - 4 year olds;
  • As of September 2015, the school has extended the age range so children of 2 - 5 years can attend 5 days a week, from 07:30 - 17:45 with extra paid sessions.
  • In September 2017 we will be offering a number of 30 hours funded sessions for qualifying 3 year olds.

We are:

  • Ofsted registered - read our latest (October 2014) report;
  • Supported by Lancashire County Council;
  • Valued by our community - we have seen many generations of families in our 65+ years history.

There has been a great deal of development in the school in recent years, including a new playground, sensory garden, improved garden area and forest school. Staff work extremely hard and there is a strong sense of supportive teamwork.


The Building - safe, secure and inclusive

The building stands in extensive grounds with lawns, trees, play dens, balance beams to the front and a new, all weather play area, to the rear, providing a range of safe, challenging experiences for the children valuing indoor and outdoor play equally.

The building itself is secured by the original high walls and security gates, additional fencing where required and a buzzer/intercom system linked to the Office for access into the site and building.  Safety gates are implemented where required (mainly upstairs) and secure fire doors are installed throughout the building.  The ramped reception area provides wheelchair access to the building providing a fully inclusive environment, and disabled changing room and toilet facilities are also available.

The nursery is based on the ground floor and is easily accessible from the roadway. Ceilings have been lowered with a floating roof to aid with sound acoustics and strip lighting has been implemented for visual needs.


The School

There are six main rooms within the building on two floors and an additional log cabin. The building stands in extensive grounds with lawns, trees, play dens, balance beams to the front, sand box, fixed climbing frames with slides to the sides and a hard surfaced play area to the rear providing facilities for a range of removable equipment and space for bikes, prams and other wheeled toys.  We have an excellent Forest School on site, which is run by our fully trained forest school leaders.

Rockwood caters for a maximum of 60 3 year old and 40 2 year old children per session.  The school is organised into mised age 'family groups' according to whether they attend sessional sessions or flexible/full time.  These family groups are led by a qualified teacher, supported by a team of Higher Level Teaching Assistants and Teaching Assistants.  All of our staff (except the apprentice in training) are trained to a minimum of NVQ level 3 qualification. Each child is allocated a key teacher and key person on starting at Rockwood. The children's family room base is used for registration and end of session activities, but after this the children access the whole school and site.  During activities they are supported with activities and planned learning specifically for their age and stage of development.  The teachers in each room monitor, assess and support each child's learning and development to ensure we are meeting your child's needs.

The Hedgehog Room is the base for our flexible (i.e 2.5 days or more) and full time children.  The Squirrel Room is the home base for our sessional children (i.e. AM or PM sessions) All rooms are set up to support the Early Years' Foundation Stage curriculum and encourage the Characteristics of Effective Learning.  This means there are continuous provision opportunities and enhancement to excite the budding artist, architect or explorer such as Painting, Mark Making area, Workshop area, Music area, Construction, Small World, ICT, Water, Sand area, Malleable area for playdough and other sensory activities, Role Play and Story area.  We have additional rooms upstairs which provide a sensory room, parent training and an after school room which contains our very popular Musk Turtles.

Each base has pigeon holes where pictures, notes and the child's book with information about changing and incidents is kept. Parents/carers are encouraged to check this area every day for updates, information, newsletters and their child's latest fabulous creative work!

A parent/carer library is available every day in the conservatory for families to choose a book and a rhyme card with their child to share at home. We ask that parents/carers complete a sheet with their child after each library book to show how much they enjoyed it - this can be a simple as simple as giving it a mark out of 10, drawing a smiley face or a picture about the book. Also within the conservatory is a range of exciting Story Sacks with stories, activities, games and feedback sheets. Parents/carers can borrow these, free of charge, every Wednesday with their child at pick up or drop off times.

Both main rooms have accessible bathroom areas with plenty of facilities. The children are encouraged to bring changes of clothing in case of accidents and school provide small change bags for a nominal fee if required.


€Both groups become Outstanding!'I’m delighted – they learn so much here. I travel for miles to get her into Rockwood’ parent quote in Ofsted report (October 2014)


The Outside Areas

The outdoor environment consists of extensive mature grounds with lawns, trees, play dens, and a new extensive play area containing balance beams, fixed climbing frames, tunnel, sensory path way, large construction area and stage.  These areas are used for continuous provision and, as for indoors, are then enhanced with additional resources to enrich the children's learning experiences based on their interests and educational needs at the time to encourage exploration and play.

All weather suits and Wellington boots are available so the areas can be accessed all year round come rain or shine. As part of their sensory experiences the children do get muddy!!!!

Forest School

From September 2015, we have designed and set up a brand new forest school area in the front garden for all children to visit and have special activities, run by our very own forest school leaders Sarah Railton and Clare Fay.  Be prepared to have lots of fun!



The school follows the Smile4Life scheme and as such each child receives information on healthy snacks, our fruit sharing policy and healthy lunchboxes in their Welcome Pack. We encourage parents to support us with this at birthdays and other special occasions. In order to help us provide these healthy snacks within the nursery and for special events for our children, we ask for a daily donation of fruit and £2 every Wednesday. This is collected by the Headteacher as families enter the school.

Wraparound Care - for Working/Training Families

The school provides education for children aged 2-5 years old from 7:30 am to 5:45 pm in term times. This is provided by an optional breakfast club (with small snack) from 7:30 - 8:30am, a lunch club from 11:30am - 12:15pm (lunch boxes need to be provided) and after school provision from 3:15 - 5:45 pm (with a light tea).  There is a charge for these sessions and a limited number of places. Please contact the office for more information.

The Hours

Morning sessions 08:30am - 11:30am

Afternoon sessions 12:15pm - 3:15pm

Full days Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday AM or Wednesday PM, Thursday Friday (plus paid lunch club per day)

We also run:

  • a lunch club from 11:30 am - 12:15 pm
  • a breakfast club from 07:30 - 08:30 am
  • an afterschool club from 3:15 - 5:45 pm


The Staff

Rockwood Nursery School has a team of experienced, well trained staff who are committed to provide the best possible care and education for our children.  This includes qualified teachers and nursery nurses. We believe our nursery has much to offer future nursery professionals, and as such supports the training of an apprentice and several volunteers.