The nursery opened its doors on April 22, where Mr Morgan unveiled a plaque commemorating the opening, took part in a reading session from author Neal Layton – who read his book A Planet full of Plastic – and got his dancing shoes to join in on a music session from BoogieMites, who run music workshops for early years.
Mr Morgan and Cheryl discussed a range of topics to improve the situation for childcare providers in the area.
This included the underfunding of early years learning, the importance of apprenticeships for early years staff, means testing for funding for early years places to ensure all children attend for 30 hours and the impact the nursery is having on children and families in Southsea.
They were also congratulated for their work achieving the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise accolade.
Cheryl said: ‘Collaboration is an important part of sustainability so it was lovely to have local writer Neal Leyton read his Planet full of Plastic, local music makers Boogie Mites teach us their new sustainability song, and our LGBTQ+ leader Simon King and manager at Tops QA came to celebrate with us as well.
‘Sadly, funding for three to four-year-olds from the government has not kept up with costs at Tops Southsea, and this reduces our ability to pay our staff what they deserve and burdens parents with having to pay more towards their children’s education and care than any other parents in Europe.
‘We also want a healthier environment and future for our children and grandchildren, with fewer diesel and petrol fumes, more attention to reducing waste and recycling and to reducing carbon footprints. Therefore, I look forward to working with our local MP to campaign for a more sustainable future for childcare providers, parents, and children.’
MP Stephen Morgan added: ‘I was particularly impressed at their commitment to reducing one-use plastic and reducing their impact on climate change, and of course huge congratulations on their Queens Award.
‘With the cost of living crisis, many nurseries and childcare providers are facing real financial challenges. That’s why I will continue to speak up for local families and the early years sector in Parliament to ensure every child in Portsmouth is able to access a high-quality early education.’