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Early Years Foundation Stage

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is a requirement for all providers to adhere to and is split into three parts. The 'Statutory Framework' sets out the standards and requirements for children's care, learning and development. The 'Development Matters' supports us as practitioners to assess childrens learning and development. The 'Know How guide' – the EYFS progress check at age two details our legal requirement to formally assess a childs progress at aged two'. Further information can be found at https://www.gov.uk/early-years-foundation-stage

Statutory Framework

At Derwent Stepping Stones managers ensure that their policies, procedures and staff practices reflect the standards set out within the Statutory Framework, as well as reflecting current and up to date thinking.

Development Matters

We have based our observation, assessment and planning systems around the Development Matters to ensure that each child is looked at as a unique child with positive relationships, within an enabling environment who is then able to learn and develop within seven areas:

  1. Personal, Social and Emotional Development
  2. Physical Development
  3. Communication and Language
  4. Literacy
  5. Mathematics
  6. Understanding the World
  7. Expressive Arts and Design

Your child will be allocated a key person who will take their time to get to know you and your child. We ask for family information to help us to support your child to settle into the setting. After five sessions your key person will review, with you, how your child is settling, any learning and development that has taken place, and how they can continue to support you and your child moving forward.

We believe in learning through play and over the following weeks your child will be observed (formally and informally) within their play whilst staff interact, support and challenge them. Through these observations your key person will plan for their individual key children to further support their learning and development. Every child is unique and different to the next, and we ensure that your child's learning and development is individual to them and their interests, needs and abilities.

We welcome parent and carer input as you are the person who knows your child best. This can be done through photos, your thoughts, at home activities and email. Your key person can discuss this more with you.

Every eight to twelve weeks your child will have a shared assessment which will reflect on your child's development in each individual learning outcome. This will indicate where your child needs to strengthen and deepen or further drive forward their learning and development.

If concerns are raised about your childs learning or development our well trained staff will work with you and your family to ensure the right support is in place.

'Know How' guide - the EYFS progress check at 2

Staff will agree with you an appropriate time for this to happen, depending on when your child has started/moved childcare rooms. We endeavour to complete this at a time when your child is settled to ensure a true reflection. This document is the same format as a Shared Summary reporting on the three Prime areas only (Personal, Social and Emotional Development, Physical Development and Communication and Language). This document is for you to share with your health visitor team to support their assessment checks of your child.

Key Worker

In order that you have a dedicated Nursery Officer who will support your child during your time with us we operate a key worker system. The key worker is allocated as soon as your child starts and will support with settling in sessions. We match each child with a key worker depending on parental choice, skills, abilities, attendance pattern and relationships.

Each key worker has a small number of key children who they work with to identify their needs and interests and plan for their next stages within their development.

The key worker will undertake regular assessments of their key children and provide information to parents about progress. The key worker will also work with parents to ensure that each child's early education is shared between home and nursery.

Record Keeping

There is a requirement for Derwent Stepping Stones to keep certain records about families we work with. This will be explained during the registration period. All information is kept securely in line with the Data Protection Act.

OFSTED Standards

Ofsted is the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills. It inspects and regulates services that care for children and young people, and services providing education and skills for learners of all ages.

Ofsted undertakes inspections and regulatory visits throughout England and publish results online. It helps providers that are not yet at good standard to improve, monitor their progress and share with them best practice.

Its goal is to achieve excellence in education and skills for learners of all ages and the care of children and young people.

Ofsted is independent, impartial and reports directly to parliament.

Link: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ofsted

Parent Partnership

We recognise that parents are their children’s most important educators and we aim to work in close partnership to ensure effective two way communication.

Daily communication with parents takes place either through a written communication diary and/or through verbal feedback. This includes areas such as mealtimes, sleeps, nappy changes, what they have enjoyed playing with etc.

We regularly collect feedback given by parents and use this to influence decision making. Newsletters are produced to share information with parents and we hold events throughout the year.