As a result of discussions with some key professionals broadly in sympathy with NASS aims and practice we plan a new initiative linking us with the 350 maintained nursery schools in the country- the majority small. They often need the kind of support our members need and we have agreed to provide advice on matters such as campaigning in closure cases. We have long argued the vital importance of early years provision and stated our pride in the fact that children starting in small schools do so knowing that home and school are on the same wavelengths.

NASS hopes to be represented at the forthcoming Ofsted Conference pledging tougher nursery inspections through targeting those thought to be less effective. By so doing we can evaluate why, for example, they and the Government, in addition to the new criterion for effective primary of schools of their pupils being "secondary ready" there is now a nursery education requirement for children to be "school ready." We shall report further in due course.