A nursery has been given an A* by inspectors who have said they have seen its standards rise to the top level.
Stanley's at Ridgeway, which is run by South Tyneside Council, has been rated as outstanding across all areas by Ofsted following its latest visit.
That is a rise in its grading from good, with outstanding awarded in its quality of teaching, learning and assessment, personal development, behaviour and welfare and its outcomes for children.
Inspectors described managers and staff as “passionate and committed” with a “first-rate knowledge” of how children learn.
Their report adds: “There is a culture of high expectation, of both staff and children, that contributes to significant developments in practice that have an extremely positive impact on outcomes for children.
“Children make particularly remarkable progress in their personal, social and emotional development.”
The report states children make excellent progress in all area of learning, developing a “remarkable range” of skills and knowledge, with many children exceeding the levels of development that are typically expected for their age.
They added to further improve the quality of the early years provision the nursery should continue to extend and enhance children's opportunities to learn about diversity.
One parent who is a fan of the nursery is Victoria Wallace whose son Oden attends the nursery.
Victoria, 35, of Lilac Avenue in South Shields, is receiving treatment for thyroid cancer but has praised the nursey for the “amazing support” it offered both her and her son.
The mum-of-five said: “I had to be in isolation for radioactive iodine therapy which meant I couldn’t see Oden for two weeks which was very hard, especially as he is my youngest.
"However, the nursery kept photos of me to show Oden and they talked about me and made sure he was OK. They also sent me photos of his time in the nursery which really helped.
"They made a really difficult situation so much easier for Oden. I would recommend the nursery to anyone.”
The nursery cares for 20 two and three-year-olds.
Councillor Moira Smith, lead member for children, young people and families, said: “We are committed to giving all our young people the best start in life and this latest inspection demonstrates our success in achieving this.
“Parents and carers are overwhelmingly positive about this nursery and this is a wonderful example of families working in partnership with staff to provide the best possible outcomes for children.”