Parents have blasted the Care Inspectorate after it issued a warning to a Dalry children’s service.

Dalry Out of School Care was served a formal Improvement Notice following an inspection which raised concerns.

The notice lists six areas which require urgent improvement including management practice, staff training and health and safety procedures. These include ensuring there are suitably qualified and competent staff, who have been correctly trained, working in the care service to ensure children are safe and well cared for.

But after the Herald reported the findings online last week, parents jumped to the defence of the service, which runs in Dalry Community Centre.

Catriona Varini, whose seven-year-old daughter attends Dalry Out of School Care, told the Herald: “It’s a brilliant service, very well run and the staff are excellent.

“I’ve never had any concerns over safety and I’m very picky about who looks after my daughter.

“The nursery is using the same building so the safety can’t be any different and yet the nursery got a glowing report.

“The staff walk them from the school and they all have to go hand-in-hand. You sign them in, you sign them out, the door’s got a lock on it and you have to ring a bell to get in, so it’s not as if anyone can just walk in and out.

“There was one time I forgot to tell them my daughter wasn’t getting the bus – my mum was picking her up – and they phoned me straight away panicking, so they know who’s going in and out.

“The staff are brilliant and so caring and obviously very well-liked by the children in their care. My daughter loves them.”

Other parents took to social media to voice their support for the service.

One mum said: “In the eight plus years that I have been a customer of Dalry Out of School Care, the care and support provided to my kids has been great and much appreciated. I have never thought or felt my children were unsafe.”

Other parents hailed the staff and praised the range of activities available within the service.

One said: “I cannot speak highly enough about this service and the wonderful women who run it.”

Another added that her children were “happy, content, settled and secure” at the service.

A spokesperson for the Care Inspectorate said: “The Improvement Notice we have issued clearly lays out the improvements we must see so that the care experienced by children improves quickly.

“We will visit this service again soon to check on progress and if we are not satisfied that the matters raised are being addressed urgently we will not hesitate to take further action.

“Everyone in Scotland has the right to safe, compassionate care which meets their needs and respects their rights. Anyone with a concern can contact our helpline on 0345 600 9527.”

The Herald contacted Dalry Out of School Care, but they declined to comment.