Minnie Me Preschool in Fairfield was named as runner up in the employer of the year award by Buxton and Leek College, in recognition of all the support it has given to those just starting out their careers.
Nursery manager Nicola Leah said: “I have long believed you need to give people a chance and we currently have six apprentices with us who are gaining both knowledge, experience and qualifications.
“I’m really pleased to be named runner-up employer of the year. It means we are doing things right by our staff which is great to hear.”
The nursery, which is based on Dew Pond Lane, has been taking on apprentices for more than eight years.
Nicola said: “Not everyone is academically minded, some people are practically minded and want a wage and to be earning and learning at the same time and it’s great there are courses like apprenticeships to help support people.”
Minnie Me Preschool in Fairfield is supporting the six apprentices through the Early Years Educator level 3 apprenticeship.
Nicola said: “For us as an employer it definitely works for us too.
“Most choose to stay with us after they have passed their level 3 qualification and we have a really low turnover of staff which shows people like working here.
“The girls have all done brilliantly with their apprenticeships and it’s so nice to be recognised by the college for the journey we have all gone on to help people follow their dream career.”
The nursery has grand plans for the future and Nicola said that in the summer holidays they will be expanding and creating another classroom.
She said: “We want to create separate spaces for separate ages to offer more focused age-appropriate learning and the new classroom will mean we can go from 75 children on the register to around 100.”
The expansion will cost between £10,000 and £15,000 and will mean Minnie Me is able to offer more parents childcare.
Nicola said: “With this happening and the recent award there is a really good buzz around the nursery at the moment and I’m excited for the future.”