How a team member who started as a Modern Apprentice is now thriving as a Nursery Manager

One of our team members, Kaleana West

KALEANA WEST – Nursery Manager – Falkirk


“I started working at Bright Beginnings as it was known when I started in 2012 as a Modern Apprentice. I had no idea when I started my Career that I would be the Nursery Manager today. I had previously attended college and completed my NQ in Childcare, I went back and done part of my HNC and found that it wasn’t for me. I wanted more hands-on experience and I didn’t find the classroom-based learning was right for me. This is what made me apply for a job to gain my Qualification through hands on experience. I have never looked back, I Qualified and was lucky enough to be kept on as a fulltime EYO, I worked in the Baby Room and then the Toddler Room where I gained experience then landed myself a Senior role. Not long after our Deputy Manager at the time Meagan Blythe went on Maternity leave and the Manager at the time asked me if I was going to apply for the position to cover the MAT leave, with some encouragement I went for the interview and I got the job. I was fully intending it only to be short-term and fully expected to go back to my Senior role. When Meagan made the decision to leave, I was given the opportunity to be Deputy Manager going forward. This decision was easy for me, and I loved being able to split my time between the office and the playrooms, it was the best of both worlds for me. I have now become Nursery Manager since May 21 and I was a little nervous about this at first. It was a little daunting to know it all landed on me, at first, I needed to adjust to the role but not even a year on I feel so confident and happy in my role. I have a happy staff team and myself and my Deputy Brogan work well to offer the best possible nursery experience for everyone!”


“I love working for Thrive for many reasons. I feel we have a great support around us because we are a large company, to have a Business Manager, Regional Manager and Early Years Team a phone call away is a massive weight off my shoulders not forgetting all the other wonderful people in the company who help make our jobs a little easier. If I need support with anything I know exactly how to get it. Ainsley my Regional is honestly one of the best people I have ever met, I was lucky enough for Ainsley to be Manager at Falkirk for several months before her promotion and it was a pleasure to work alongside her and be taught by her. She taught me so much in a small space of time and more importantly made me believe in myself and know what I am capable of. I honestly would not be where I am today, and Falkirk being as successful as it is if it wasn’t for Ainsley. She is a credit to the Company. I feel accepted in the company, I feel listened to and respected and I cannot see myself working somewhere that isn’t Thrive Childcare and Education.”

If you’re interested in working for Thrive Childcare and Education, check out our careers page.