EYFS-Policy Parkland 2022
Early Years Foundation Stage Policy
Academy: Co-op Academy Parkland
Policy owner: Charlotte Wierzbianski
Date: November 2022
Date shared with staff: November 2022
Date agreed by governors: December 2022
Date for review: December 2023
This policy aims to ensure:
• That children access a broad and balanced curriculum that gives them the broad range of knowledge and skills needed for good progress through school and life.
• Quality and consistency in teaching, learning and assessment so that every child makes good or better progress and no child gets left behind.
• Effective working partnerships between practitioners and with parents and/or carers.
• Every child is included and supported through equality of opportunity and anti-discriminatory practice.
Co-op Academy Parkland is part of Co-op Academies Trust.
The Co-op was founded on a set of values describing a different, fairer and better way of doing things.
We demonstrate our commitment to these values in everything we do.
• Caring for others
• Self help
• Social responsibility
At Co-op Academy Parkland and throughout this policy, the term Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is used to describe children within Nursery and Reception classes. In partnership with parents and carers, we enable the children to begin the process of becoming lifelong learners.
“When we give every child the best start in their early years, we give them what they need today. We also set them up with every chance of success tomorrow.”
Development Matters, Non-statutory curriculum guidance for the Early Years Foundation Stage. July 2021
The EYFS Development Matters is based on seven key features of effective practice:
1. The best for every child - All children deserve to have an equal chance of success.
2. High-quality care - The child’s experience must always be central to the thinking of every practitioner.
3. The curriculum - What we want children to learn.
4. Pedagogy - Helping children to learn
5. Assessment - Checking what children have learnt, what they can do and what they know.
6. Self-regulation and executive function
7. Partnership with parents - It is important for parents and early years settings to have a strong and respectful partnership. This sets the scene for children to thrive in the early years.
In line with this, our setting aims:
- To ensure all children feel valued, involved and equal.
- To ensure the children are provided with challenging, playful opportunities across all areas of learning.
- To provide the relevant learning environment which nurtures child initiation and encourages them to become independent, motivated and confident learners.
- To provide opportunities for children to engage in child initiated activities where the staff are led by the children’s interests and curiosity.
- To provide the children with clear rules and routines which are embedded quickly and give them the best possible start to school life.
- To provide a learning environment which develops meaningful learning opportunities but also builds a transferable skill base which they can take through life with them.
- To encourage parents and carers to become involved in the children’s learning.
- To rapidly develop children’s spoken language as this underpins all areas of learning and development. This will be done through quality conversations and a language rich environment.
Our school ethos, as well as that of the EYFS, embraces and promotes inclusion. We celebrate the differences of our children, families, staff, local communities and the wider world.
“These differences include, but are not limited to gender, pregnancy and maternity, ethnicity, culture, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion or belief, marital and civil partnership status, education, learning styles and those with a caring responsibility.”
We recognise and respect the abilities and strengths of our children at all levels of development and the wealth of knowledge and experience that they bring from their differing backgrounds and cultures.
We actively challenge gender stereotyping and discriminatory attitudes, remarks or behaviour.
We give our children every opportunity to achieve their best. We do this by taking account of our children’s range of life experiences when planning for their learning. We set realistic and challenging expectations that meet the needs of individual children, so that children are able to reach their full potential.
As part of our commitment to inclusion we provide:
• A wide range of opportunities to motivate and support children and to help them to learn effectively
• A safe and supportive learning environment in which the contribution of all children is valued
• Resources which reflect diversity and are free from discrimination and stereotyping • Challenging activities for all children
We will monitor children’s progress and take action to provide support as necessary. Where a specific need is suspected we will liaise with the Special Educational Needs co-ordinator (SENDCO) and seek advice from outside agencies. We adhere to the Equal Opportunity and Inclusion policies of the school.
Enabling Environments and Safety
We provide a carefully planned and structured learning environment which gives the children the opportunity to gain skills and knowledge across a wide range of areas.
Each day, the children have access to both indoor and outdoor classrooms which give them the opportunity to access enhanced (according to the children’s interests) and continuous provision areas. The planning is based on the children’s prior learning and experiences and children’s interests. Objective led next steps are used to address gaps in learning and ensure children make progress. We feel that this is very important to allow children opportunities to direct their own learning based on prior knowledge and learning they have been exposed to. Staff are always on hand to enhance and question the children to ensure individual needs are met and challenged.
Alongside creating a fun and well planned learning environment, it is also important that all children in the school are kept safe and feel ‘safe’. We create a safe and secure environment and provide a curriculum which teaches children how to be safe, make choices and assess risks. We have risk assessments in place to ensure children’s safety.
There are seven areas of learning and development set out in the Development Matters 2021 document. They all play a key part in developing the whole child.
- Communication and Language - The development of children’s spoken language underpins all seven areas of learning and development.
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development - Children’s personal, social and emotional development (PSED) is crucial for children to lead healthy and happy lives, and is fundamental to their cognitive development.
- Physical Development - Physical activity is vital in children’s all-round development, enabling them to pursue happy, healthy and active lives.
- Literacy - It is crucial for children to develop a life-long love of reading.
- Mathematics - Developing a strong grounding in number is essential so that all children develop the necessary building blocks to excel mathematically.
- Understanding the World - Understanding the world involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community.
- Expressive Arts and Design - The development of children’s artistic and cultural awareness supports their imagination and creativity.
When planning and supporting children’s activities, we reflect on the different ways that children learn and adapt these in our practice. We place emphasis on the consideration of the three characteristics of effective teaching and learning. These are:
- Playing and Exploring – children investigate and experience things, and ‘have a go’.
- Active learning – children concentrate and keep on trying if they encounter difficulties, and enjoy achievements.
- Creating and thinking critically - children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things
In the EYFS, we recognise that play is an integral part of the children’s learning. Many opportunities are given for them to explore their own interests and build on their own play by revisiting, refining and further developing their skill. They have ‘free choice’ over which areas they access and what play they undertake. However, alongside this, children have whole class, key worker and small group times which increase as they progress through the EYFS with times for a daily phonics session. The children also take part in the teaching of mathematics and literacy including shared reading and writing.
We teach phonics through the Read Write Inc approach.
We have an ambitious, well sequenced curriculum that begins in EYFS and builds over time. This ensures that children are better prepared for their next stage in learning by remembering key knowledge.
Structure of the EYFS
The Nursery has 48 part-time places available or the equivalent full-time (30 hr) places or a mixture of both for children aged three and above.
There is one full-time Reception class with 30 places for children aged 4-5.
In Nursery, the children attend for two full days on a Monday and Tuesday and on Wednesday morning. The Nursery is staffed by a Lead Practitioner and Nursery Nurse. 30 hour children spend the rest of the week in our Reception class with a key worker. The staffing in Reception consists of two part-time teachers (Job share), one Nursery Nurse and a teaching assistant. There are four members of staff with level three paediatric first aid certificates across the two classes. There are a further 2 members of staff in school with paediatric first aid certificates.
First aid is managed in line with our school First Aid Policy. When children are taken out of school on educational trips, a higher ratio of one adult to four children is observed with the Nursery children and one adult to six children with the Reception children. I think we have one to five in reception. Can I just check that it is definitely one to six?
Please see the Co-op Academies Trust Safer Recruitment Policy for how a quality workforce is ensured.
For all Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) settings:
The manager of the setting must hold at least a full and relevant level 3 qualification
At least half of all other staff must hold at least a full and relevant level 2 qualification
The manager of the setting should have at least 2 years of experience of working in an early years setting, or have at least 2 years of other suitable experience
At least 1 person who has a current paediatric first aid (PFA) certificate must be on the premises and available at all times when children are present, and must accompany children on outings.
Age of children
Number of staff
Children aged 3 and over
Where a person with Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), Early Years Professional Status (EYPS), Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS) or another suitable level 6 qualification, an instructor or a suitably qualified overseas trained teacher is working directly with the children:
Where there is no person with the qualifications mentioned above:
Children in reception classes
At least 1 school teacher for every 30 children
Assessment and record keeping
The children will have a baseline assessment on entry to Nursery/ Reception. Reception children will also complete the statutory Reception Baseline Assessment (RBA) within the first half term.
Each member of staff will make observations on the play and learning that the children engage with’. Parents will be informed of these observations via ‘Class Dojo’ where they will have direct access to their own child’s profile online and are alerted each time a new observation is made.
An ongoing assessment of the children’s learning ensures that future planning reflects the needs and interests of all pupils. Practitioners use internal assessments effectively to inform curriculum and planning. They consider whether they demand enough of children and if children consolidate and deepen their knowledge, understanding and skills across the areas of learning. Practitioners use this information to plan children’s next steps in learning and to monitor their progress.
Formal assessments are made at the end of each term and recorded on academy spreadsheets. At the end of Reception, the Foundation Stage Profile is completed for each child and assesses the children’s attainments against the Early Years Goals as well as a commentary of the ‘Characteristics of Effective Learning’.
Records will be maintained and information will be shared with others (with parents and carers, other professionals working with the child, the police, social services and Ofsted or the childminder agency with which they are registered, as appropriate)
We will enable a regular two-way flow of information with parents and/or carers, and between providers, if a child is attending more than one setting.
We will incorporate parents’ and/or carers’ comments into children’s records.
Families as Partners
We strive to create and maintain partnerships with children, their parents and carers as we recognise that together, we can have a significant impact on a child’s learning. We do this through:
- Offering induction meetings, home visits or visits to current settings prior to any child starting Reception or Nursery. We also have a staggered entry approach so parents and the children have the time to settle and create bonds with their new teachers and staff.
- We invite our families to stay and play sessions which allow parents to come in and spend time seeing how their children play and learn. We also invite parents to other events in or out of school whenever possible.
- Giving parents the time to speak to teachers at the start or end of school each day and encouraging parents to talk to the class teacher if they have any queries or concerns.
- Inviting all parents to a formal meeting (Parents’ Evening) twice a year at which the teacher and parent discuss the child’s progress.
- Giving parents the opportunity to view and comment on their child’s learning journey through Class Dojo.
- Providing parents with an end of year school report on their child’s progress and attainment.
If a child needs medication a medical form will be completed at the main office.
Prescription medicines will only be administered if they have been prescribed for a child by a doctor, dentist, nurse or pharmacist, and they will be administered by a member of staff with a PFA (paediatric first aid) certificate.
Prescription medicine will only be administered to a child where written permission for that particular medicine has been obtained from the child’s parent and/or carer.
A written record will be kept each time a medicine is administered to a child, and the child’s parents and/or carers will be informed on the same day.
Accidents and injuries will be dealt with in line with our First Aid Policy
A first aid kit is located in the EYFS building.
Any injury or accident parents/carers will be informed the same day and a written record will be kept in the accident book.
Food and drink
Snacks and drinks provided will be healthy, balanced and nutritious. These will be provided in the designated snack area.
Hygienic preparation of food will take place in the designated snack area or the Rainbow room.
All staff in EYFS have an appropriate Food Hygiene in School certificate All of the staff completed these but it may have been a few years ago. Can i check how long the certificates are valid for?
Any information about any special dietary requirements, preferences and food allergies that the child has, and any special health requirements will be collected before the child starts the setting. This must be recorded and acted upon immediately.
Fresh drinking water will be available and accessible at all times.
Behaviour will be managed in line with our Academy Behaviour Policy which can be found on our website. We take a positive approach to behaviour in our academy through the use of positive praise and Class Charts.
We want our children to experience a smooth educational and emotional transition from Nursery to Reception to ensure that children make the best start to their school life. Children and parents are actively involved in the process of transition and preparations for transition are seen below:-
- The Reception teachers spend time in Nursery in the summer term, observing the children in their familiar environment and observing practice.
- Each child is assigned to a class, their class teacher is their key person. In reception, the children are spread between the four members of staff working in there.
- Time is planned for meetings between the Nursery and Reception teachers to discuss ongoing assessment and profile information.
- Nursery children will visit Reception class with a member of the nursery team during the summer term for stay and play sessions, this helps the children become familiar with the environment and the staff.
- Reception class parents are invited to a new parents’ meeting, this aims to give parents information on class teachers, uniform, day to day activities, start and finishing times etc. Also, the new parents and children are invited to come and stay for a school lunch.
- Parents of Nursery children are invited to visit the nursery setting following a home visit. Their Class Dojo account is set up to start sharing information with parents and they are directed to our school website and Facebook page to access further information.
- Reception and Nursery stagger the intake of children in September to ease the transition and have time to build relationships with the children.
- Reception and Year 1 also work together to make the transition from the Early Years Foundation Stage to Key Stage 1 as smooth as possible.
- EYFS Profiles are passed onto the Year 1 teacher and an EYFS Profile/Characteristics of Effective Learning is passed on to the Year 1 teacher during transition meetings.
- Reception and Year 1 teacher meet to discuss individual needs of the children in July.
- Reception children visit their new Year 1 class and teacher during whole school transition sessions.
- The ‘Read, Write Inc’ approach to phonics is continued throughout the Key Stage 1.
- Year 1 continues to offer continuous provision and a play based focus on learning.
Safeguarding and Welfare in Foundation Stage
We adhere to the school policies regarding safeguarding and welfare.
Please refer to the following documents:
• The Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy
• Co-op Academies Trust Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policy
• Co-op Academies Trust Staff Conduct Policy
• Co-op Academies Trust Staffing and Recruitment Policy
• Health and safety Policy
• First Aid Policy (which includes the administration of medicines)
• Behaviour Policy
• Data Protection Policy
• Complaints Policy
• The Prevent Duty
• Keeping Children Safe in Education
• Intimate Care Policy
• Co-op Academies Trust Whistleblowing Policy
• Co-op Academies Trust Allegations of abuse against staff
Appendix 1. List of statutory policies and procedures for the EYFS
Statutory policy or procedure for the EYFS
Where can it be found?
Safeguarding policy and procedures
See Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy
Procedure for responding to illness
See First Aid/ Health and Safety Policy
Administering medicines policy
See Supporting Pupils with Medical Conditions Policy
Emergency evacuation procedure
See Health and Safety Policy
Procedure for checking the identity of visitors
See Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy
Procedures for a parent failing to collect a child and for missing children
See Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy
Procedure for dealing with concerns and complaints
See Complaints Policy