In this case a parent acted on behalf of their child as they were too young to bring the case to court themselves.
In 2011, Nina Machin arrived at nursery to pick up her two daughters as usual. However, when she arrived she saw that one of her daughters, Sarah, had a large, deep cut on her right cheek. When questioning the assistant manager of the nursery about the incident she was told that she was unsure of what had happened but had been told by one of the bursary assistants that Sarah had banged her cheek on the bannister as she was walking down the stairs.
Nina again questioned the assistant manager about where exactly the incident had happened and which part of the handrail had caused the injury and she was again told that she was unsure. However, Ms Machin was still asked to sign an accident report, which stated that her daughter had been injured on her left cheek when in fact it was her right cheek.
Unhappy with the explanation that the cut had been caused by the smooth bannister, she asked the assistant manager whether she should take her daughter to see the GP or to the hospital. She was told no and that it was just an accident. Nina trusted their professional opinion and didn’t seek professional medical advice.
Sarah remained quiet and withdrawn all evening, after being asked about the incident she became extremely upset. So, the next day Ms Machin asked another member of staff – the manager – and was told that it would be looked in to. After chasing up the feedback she was eventually given the same information that she had already received and was told that the assistant that was supervising Sarah at the time had now left the nursery.
After several conversations with other managers and even the owner of the nursery, Nina was still unhappy with the response she had received so made a complaint to Ofsted. Ofsted performed and unannounced visit to the nursery and issued them with a notice stating that they must improve.
Thanks to the hard work of Sarah Mawdsley, Ms Machin was awarded £3,000 for her daughter Sarah, to compensate her for her injuries.