Our Team

The nursery currently has 8 members of staff, each holding relevant Early Years Qualifications. Additionally all staff have Paediatric First Aid and up to date Safeguarding Training. In additional to the core staffing, there is a regular team who make extra-curricular contributions in the areas of ball skills, music and drama.


Krystyna is a qualified teacher, specialising in English and French who founded the nursery in 1985. She has developed the nursery from a small home-based educational provision to a successful and very popular educational nursery setting, which has twice in succession achieved an Ofsted 'Outstanding' grading. Krystyna has developed a successful and popular approach to teaching French to the nursery children, as part of the weekly Senior children's programme. 


Sophie joined the nursery in 2012 and she is an Honours graduate with a degree in Sport and Exercise Science who also holds an Early Years Professional Qualification and is a qualified Gymnastics Club Coach (L3). Sophie is able to draw on her qualifications and interests in Sport, Health and Education to enrich the curriculum of the nursery. Sophie is responsible for the overall management of the nursery and the staff team.


Sue is the Deputy Manager of the nursery and leads the Junior Room team and joined us in 2011. She holds a Level 3 Early Years Childcare Qualification. Sue works particularly effectively with children and their parents and carers to settle the children into nursery life. She uses a calm and reassuring approach and provides enriching experiences for each day. Sue is also an integral part of the afternoon team. 


Sally joined us in 2007 and holds a Level 3 Early Years Childcare Qualification. She is our Health & Safety and Safguarding Officer and a valued member of our team; she contributes effective organisational skills to contribute to the work of the nursery. Sally has twin daughters and is a keen swimmer and tennis player, we always look forward to Wimbledon fortnight and Sally bringing her expertise to our future tennis players! 


Nifi joined us through the Apprenticeship scheme in 2014. She successfully completed her Level 2 Early Years Childcare Qualification with us as an Apprentice and has subsequently completed her Level 3 with us. With a number of years experience, Nifi has responsibility for Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) at Downside Nursery. Her holistic approach to child development is a distinctive feature of her approach to childcare at the nursery. She is core member of the team both in the mornings in the Senior Room and in afternoons. Nifi uses her creative talents to enhance the nursery programme. 


Katie is the newest member of our team, she started her apprenticeship in October 2020, working towards her level 2 in childcare, she has quickly become a valued member of the staff team. She instinctivly relates to young children which enables her to form strong bonds with them.


We are delighted to welcome Angela back to us as a member of staff after working at another nursery for a number of years. Angela is a fully qualified member of staff and brings a wealth of experience from teaching in the UK and overseas and works with the team each day.

Specialist Staff

To complement our curriculum, we have a team of specialist staff who make contributions throughout the week: 

  • Weekly French sessions run by Krys, an experienced language teacher who provides a fun and popular programme of early French.
  • 'Playball' sessions which focus on ball and sports skills.
  • Weekly live music and singing sessions are provided by an experienced, professional music teacher, Nina.
  • 'Pyjama Drama' is a popular imagination-based drama class led by Alex. 

The staff leading these sessions provide additional valuable role models for the children and enhance our curriculum by directly linking with the areas of learning within the EYFS. 

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