Why this is leading practice
The school has established outstanding provision and practice within their Early Years and in Key Stage 1. Children in the EYFS make significant progress in all aspects of their learning. They are given sensitive encouragement in a very caring environment to achieve their best.
Impact to date
• Well organised and supportive learning environment. Children, from low starts on entry to school, make outstanding progress and the majority meet or exceed their expected targets in the Early Learning Goals.
• Analysis of the children’s levels of attainment on entry this year showed that all children were assessed as being below the national average of L3 in all of the 6 areas of the Early Learning Goals.
• By the end of Term 4, 85% of children have achieved L6+ in Dispositions and Attitudes, 79% achieved L6+ in Social Development and 76% achieved L6+ in Emotional Development. In Language for Communication and Literacy 71% have achieved L6+, 44% in Linking Sounds and Letters and 35% in Reading. In Numbers as Labels and for Counting, 79% achieved L6+, in Calculation 41% have achieved L6+ and in Shape, Space and Measure, 76% have achieved this level. Where L6+ is judged to be the national average for children at the end of the Foundation Stage, this would indicate that the majority have made good or outstanding progress
• The school has developed a curriculum that is vibrant and exciting and accessible to all pupils both inside and out.
• The outdoor area is accessible to all pupils in the Early Years and Key Stage 1 and is designed to support the learning of all the children
• The numbers of children starting at the school in the Early Years have grown over the last four years and the school is developing an excellent reputation within the community for high quality early years provision
Rationale / Start Point
In September 2005, the Foundation Stage Coordinator took over a setting that had been judged as 'unsatisfactory'. The Foundation Stage class had a poor reputation in the local area, and the school roll was falling. We were determined to raise standards and achieve an 'outstanding' judgement, which we accomplished in October 2008. We have developed a strong team, investing in professional development for all early years practitioners. We have developed and resourced both the indoor and outdoor learning environments, and offer the experience of going to Forest School all year round.
• The school has developed, through the passionate and outstanding leadership of the Foundation Stage Coordinator, an area that caters well for all early years children.
• The learning environment is well organised and structured to encourage children to become independent learners.
• The school has adjusted its timetable to ensure that the major part of the day is given to child initiated activities.
• The inviting and appealing outside learning environment, accessible for all children in the Early Years and Year 1 has been designed to support learning. The school has a strong commitment to outdoor learning through its outdoor provision and its links with the Forest School that children regularly visit.
• The school has developed excellent support through increased links with children and families. This has encouraged higher attendance by children to school and sessions with parents led by staff have provided them with further knowledge of how to support their child’s learning
• The school has taken part in a project called “Adult / Child Interaction” to improve assessment techniques by teachers and support staff. This has led to a clearer understanding of pupil’s levels of attainment
• The school operates an effective home/school programme of visits prior to children starting at school that allows children to feel confident when they begin school
• The children are actively involved in the planning of work through themes and encourages them to have ownership of their learning and provides teachers with appropriate staring points for their learning
• Staff in the Early Years and Key Stage 1 work very closely together to ensure that children continue to make good progress during the transition period. Regular planning meetings are held and information about all the children is freely shared between key teaching and support staff. Parents are also encouraged to make comments through informal discussion and questionnaires
Sustainability and Further Development
• The school has established excellent practices which are well embedded in the day to day running of the Early Years.
• All staff both teaching and non-teaching work very well as a team and are well supported by the Senior Leadership Team
• The school is keen to continue to develop its outside provision through building a “Forest School” environment to enable children to have better access to a wider range of provision.