A pre-school is set to reopen under new operators at a Southampton school after it suddenly closed on March 22.

Nurseries and pre-school operator, Paint Pots, is set to open a pre-school in Bitterne Church of England Primary School from April 15.

It comes just days after the Echo reported how Bitterne Community Pre-School would close before the Easter holidays, after reporting staff shortages and an impact on funding from a recent Ofsted inspection.

Paint Pots, an early years group, already operates pre-schools across Southampton and Hampshire, which it said are all graded “outstanding” or “good” by education regulator, Ofsted.

After the previous pre-school closed, Paint Pots was approached to see if it could take on the provision of a setting in the same location.

Bitterne Community Pre-School closed on March 22 and parents were left in shock at the sudden closure. 

The new opening has been agreed following discussions the school and Southampton City Council, and will be subject to final approval from Ofsted.

The executive director of Paint Pots, The Revd Canon Nick Ralph said: “Following a period of uncertainty for staff and parents, and some detailed discussions over the last week or so, Paint Pots is delighted to step in and open this new setting.

“The nursery will be known as Paint Pots Bitterne Pre-School and we look forward to working closely with the children, the parents, and the school to enable children there to thrive.”

Paint Pots is run by a charity, the Launchpad Social Enterprise, which is part of the Anglican Diocese of Winchester.

The nursey group said that there is a strong connection with Bitterne CofE Primary School which is also part of the diocese.

The Paint Pots board is chaired by the Bishop of Winchester, the Rt Revd Philip Mounstephen.

As stated by Paint Pots, it aims for the majority of the existing staff to remain in post to ensure continuity for the children.

There will be a new manager and the pre-school will benefit from the wider Paint Pots staff team.

These staff will support with supervision, curriculum, HR, finance, training, and maintenance.

Paint Pots said that it has been in touch with parents and will continue to communicate regularly with them over the coming days.