Nursery in clear but left furious as Facebook poster drops claim

Melville Street Nursery. Picture: Neil Hanna
Melville Street Nursery. Picture: Neil Hanna

A NEW TOWN nursery that was accused of misconduct by a stranger on Facebook is seeking an apology after police investigations found that the claims laid against them were false.

Staff from Melville Street Nursery were left shocked after a social media post went viral on Thursday following a trip to Craigie’s Farm in South Queensferry.

In the Facebook post, that has since been removed, 
Julie Hamilton accused nursery staff of treating children with “no respect or compassion”.

She then accused staff of throwing full baby cups of water at children and said they were left out in the 28C sunshine without sun hats and still wearing jackets.

Chris Mitchell, Head of Finance at the Early Days Nurseries group said: “Police were satisfied that there were no allegations to answer and their interest in the matter has ceased.”

Mr Mitchell told the Evening News that staff had been “super stressed” in the days following the post but that they had been “overwhelmed” by the support offered from parents.

A lengthy post on the Early Days Nurseries Facebook page addressed the incident. Investigations carried out by the nursery found that there had “been no wrongdoing or misconduct by our staff, in any way.”

CCTV footage from Craigie’s Farm and photographs taken by staff on the day confirmed that the accusations were false.

Mr Mitchell said: “We were told that during the police interview Ms Hamilton was very apologetic and didn’t want to take the matter further. We hope for a retraction and an apology.

“We’d encourage people to use appropriate channels if they have genuine concerns and ensure their facts are accurate.”

A number of parents contacted the Evening News in support of the nursery. Susanne Beveridge said: “I am utterly appalled by what I have seen on social media. My daughter has had the most amazing care. She is happy, confident, well rounded and ready for school. The staff are just fantastic.”

A mum, who asked not to be named, said: “As a parent there I can’t sing the praises of Melville Street Nursery highly enough ... This post will have hit them hard as they strive for the very best in their care and development of all children in their care. This is a very good example of how social media can be a very dangerous thing.”

Mr Mitchell said: “We work hard to do a good job. The response from our parents has been fantastic and it’s what that support indicates about our nursery.

“We have no way of measuring the damage that has been done.”