Welcome to the new-look February edition of the Newsletter. We have listened to your feedback and made the Newsletter less cluttered, and more navigable and user-friendly. We hope that you like the changes we have made, any feedback will be much appreciated.

The first few weeks of the year have been a busy one for the early years sector as we all prepare for the nation-wide roll out of the Early Years Pupil Premium. DfE has published a number of guidance documents for providers and local authorities on the EYPP which can be accessed below.   

Ofsted has made some significant changes to its inspections, including bringing all early years settings which are on the Early Years Register under a Common Inspection Framework.

We bring you all this and more, including updates and events from some of the leading early years organisations.

As always do keep in touch at, and follow our twitter account  and facebook page for all the latest early years news.

Best wishes
The Children’s Partnership
Updates from the Government
Updates from the Sector
Latest Resources

Updates from the Government

Early Years Pupil Premium: Guidance for Providers
The Department for Education has published a model form and letter to help providers of early years education identify which children are eligible for the early years pupil premium.

The form will help providers identify which of the children in their care are eligible for the EYPP. DfE recommends that providers ask all parents and guardians, regardless of family income or circumstances, to complete the form when they enroll their child.

Providers can use the template letter to explain to parents what the EYPP is when they are asked to fill in the form.

The form and letter can be accessed here.
Early Years Pupil Premium: Guide for Local Authorities
The Department for Education has published guidance on how much funding local authorities will receive for the early years pupil premium, and how they should distribute it to early years providers. The guidance can be accessed here.
Extra Funding for Councils to Prepare for EYPP
Childcare Minister Sam Gyimah has announced new funding for councils to help them prepare for the introduction of the early years pupil premium. The DfE is giving councils an additional £1.5 million to support the introduction of the early years pupil premium - and they can choose how best to use the money, e.g. upgrade their IT systems to smooth the transition or use the funding to communicate with their local providers.
Reception Baseline: Guideline for Schools
The Department for Education is introducing a baseline assessment in reception year, the reception baseline, to improve how they measure primary schools’ progress. From 2016, the reception baseline assessment will be the only measure the DfE will use to assess the progress of children who enter reception year. The baseline assessment will score each pupil against the knowledge and understanding typical for children at the start of reception year.

Click here for more details about the Baseline
DfE £5 Million Funding for Teaching Schools to Work with Nurseries
The Minister for Childcare and Education, Sam Gyimah, has announced funding of £5 million to boost the quality of early years education. The funding will be awarded to more than 60 teaching schools across the country who will partner up with local nurseries to drive up standards and share best practice. The new scheme will enable local nurseries to work with the very best early years teachers and school leaders to increase the quality of early years education in their area.
Two-Year Olds in School: Demonstration Project and Case Studies
This report by National Children’s Bureau (NCB) and Frontier Economics for the Department for Education details the findings from nearly 50 schools that developed early education provision for two-years-olds. Overall, the evaluation indicates that schools can make an important contribution to offering funded early education opportunities for two-year-olds and within this, to work in partnership with parents and with other early years providers in order to meet the developmental, social and emotional needs of these children.

Click here for more details about the report and accompanying case studies
Ofsted Reforms to Education Inspection
Ofsted consulted on its proposals to have a common inspection framework covering registered early years setting; schools and further education and skills’ providers. Nearly 5,000 people have given their views since then, with the vast majority supporting all of the proposed reforms. The positive response means that these changes can now move forward with a strong endorsement from the public, education professionals, parents, carers and learners. The Common Inspection Framework is designed to ensure a consistent approach to Ofsted inspections. It will focus on keeping young people safe, the breadth of the curriculum in schools, the relevance of courses and training in further education and skills, and the quality of early learning. You can read Ofsted’s response to the consultation here while the full report can be accessed here.


Funding available for Early Years Teacher training for September 2015 start
Do you have a graduate working in your setting?

National College for Teaching and Leadership are offering £14,000 to train and support a graduate employed in your setting to become an Early Years Teacher.

Funding covers training course fees of up to £7,000, the remaining £7,000 is a contribution for the employer and can be used for supply cover for the trainee and other support costs such as salary enhancement.

Graduates can apply for this funding through accredited ITT providers who deliver Early Years Teacher training across England.  

Graduates who successfully complete the training will be awarded Early Years Teacher Status.

Further information on all routes to become an Early Years Teacher, including entry requirements can be found here.

E-Learning Modules from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health
Launching in March 2015, Information Sharing Matters will be an easily identifiable online learning package on information sharing in the early years, which would be appropriate for and accessible to both early years and health professionals in a range of settings.  Basic information about the programme can be accessed here online.

Click here for more details about Information Sharing Matters and other free online courses 

DfE marketing material for 2 year old offer
DfE has made available marketing material for the 2 year old offer that everyone is free to use. We have reproduced the material below so that everyone can share it freely.  



Updates from the Sector

Anne Longfield's Farewell

It gives me great pleasure to say "Thank You" to the early years sector for all of your support as I prepare to depart this week as 4Children's Chief Executive! Thank you too for your commitment, dedication and hard work in all that you do in supporting our youngest children and their families.

I will continue to set sights high for young children and young people in my new role as the Children’s Commissioner for England. I am delighted and hugely privileged to have been appointed and ready to start next week. It’s a vitally important role with the potential to make a real difference for children in this country – especially for those vulnerable children who need our protection and support the most. It has been an honour to have been the Chief Executive of 4Children for over two decades and I am immensely proud of all that the organisation has achieved. I am delighted that Imelda Redmond CBE will be spearheading 4Children's work and taking the lead as 4Children’s new Chief Executive. 

Thank you again for your support.
Best wishes 

Anne Longfield OBE 

The Communication Trust
No Pens Day Wednesday Evaluation and Date for 2015 Event
No Pens Day Wednesday is an annual national event from The Communication Trust that encourages schools and settings to run a whole day of lessons focussed on speaking and listening activities. No Pens Day Wednesday 2014 was a huge success with over 3,600 schools and settings signed up in total. It was also the first year materials had been provided specifically for early years settings and saw them make up 22% of the total sign up numbers!

Click here for more details about the evaluation
Family Action – Childcare in Schools
Visit the Learning Exchange website for numerous free templates, top tips, news articles and useful links to help you develop school-based childcare provision.

For example:
  • Visit our Learning Exchange Facebook page for training suggestions, services, ideas, events and other information related to school-based childcare and holiday activities for children with SEND, particularly in the North West
  • Look at our new section offering information and ideas about developing inclusion for children with SEND in school-based childcare and holiday activities.
  • Look at our new web section on developing school-based provision for 2 year olds.
  • Find out how other schools approach school-based childcare.
  • Sign up to our latest Learning Exchange e-bulletin.
Family and Childcare Trust
‘Parent Champions - Helping you deliver on the two-year-old offer’ - Family and Childcare Trust briefing sheet
Family and Childcare Trust has just published a new briefing sheet titled ‘Parent Champions - Helping you deliver on the two-year-old offer’.  It shows how this parent peer-to-peer model can help get key messages out to families, and also explains what support you can get to set up a scheme.  You can find the briefing sheet and further information on the Family and Childcare Trust website or contact Deborah Brodie, Project Manager.
National Literacy Trust
New results show impact of Early Words Together programme on children’s development
New research has shown that the National Literacy Trust’s Early Words Together programme is boosting children’s literacy development. Interim findings from experts at Coventry University have shown that the early intervention, which focuses on parental engagement, is creating a statistically significant impact on children’s receptive vocabulary.

Sector magazine, Children and Young People Now, have also reported on Early Words Together. Their Good Practice Case Study showcases how the programme enables parents to share books with their children and join in with other early learning activities.

Click here for more details about the programme and how to implement it in your school or setting
CARE Survey
The CARE project is funded by the European Union to develop knowledge about early childhood education and care in European countries, in order to provide information to improve services.

The study includes all kinds of out-of-home early education and care for children from 0-6 years, e.g. child minders, day nurseries, children’s centres, nursery class, nursery school etc. Part of the project is a study of the views of parents, policy-makers and practitioners. If you wish to take part, please fill in this online questionnaire.
Early Education
We are preparing a briefing for schools on the six baseline assessment providers approved by DfE, and issues to consider when choosing between them.  This is still under preparation at the time of writing but will be published on our website as soon as it is available, which should be by early March at the latest.

We will be publishing Every Child a Mover: a practical guide to providing young children with the physical opportunities they need, a new book by Jan White on physical development in the summer. 

Click here for more details about the book and the Early Education Conference and events
Montessori Centre International is delighted to announce the new Diploma in Montessori Pedagogy – Birth to Seven (Early Years Educator) - available via distance learning

A training in Montessori education requires a breadth of understanding and varied set of skills as well as specific attitudes to children. It is with the aim of simultaneously cultivating all of these that Montessori Centre International, Crossfields Institute and CACHE have developed this new qualification.

Click here for more details
Baby Steps Evaluation

The NSPCC has been running a new antenatal programme for vulnerable parents called Baby Steps, which aims to support mothers and fathers during pregnancy and in the weeks after birth. It has been developed to support mothers and fathers as they transition into parenthood, with a particular emphasis on the relationship between parents and the development of positive parent–infant relationships. It is hoped that the programme will improve the capacity of parents to care for and nurture their baby. The programme also seeks to strengthen parents’ support networks.

The evaluation report for the programme has now been published and can be accessed here.
Latest Resources

Republication of Common Core of Skills and Knowledge for the Children’s and Young People’s Workforce

All the Foundation Years Newsletters from 2012 onwards

NSPCC - Baby Steps Evaluation

Presentations from Learn Explore Debate events 2014

Presentations from Special Educational Needs & Disability LED events 2014

Presentations from Childcare & Early Learning Hubs seminars 2014


Early Childhood Matters
Sector led quality improvement – innovative next steps
National Conference – Tuesday 10 March 2015

This conference will address:
  • The latest innovative research, thinking and tools for the Early Years Foundation Stage.
  • Introducing the New Sustained Shared Thinking and Emotional Well-being Scale (SSTEW) as used in the SEED research.
  • Early Years Pupil Premium Tool Kit and call for evidence
  • Parents information to support their children
To book on go here or call 020 7522 9670
Supporting and working with parent to narrow the gap
24 March 2015 – Leeds
26 March 2015 – London

These seminars will address:
  • Policy update on the role of parents in their child’s learning development
  • Enabling parents as their child progresses through their early years and into school
  • Reaching and supporting the most vulnerable and hard to reach parents
  • Home learning and its importance
  • Supporting parents of children with SEND
To book on go to here or call 020 7522 6970
Family Action – Childcare in Schools
Developing sustainable and inclusive childcare on a school site
Free inclusion training

Family Action is running a free training workshop for schools, children’s centres and other childcare providers wishing to develop inclusion for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). This will take place on Thursday, 12 March 2015, 9.30am to 3pm at the RNIB Pears Centre for Specialist Learning, Wheelwright Lane, Ash Green, Coventry CV7 9RA.

The session will be led by Alison John & Associates and will focus on:
  • A parent’s perspective
  • Terminology in relation to disabled children
  • SEND Reforms and Equality Act
  • Barriers to inclusion and developing solutions
  • Practice and principles of adapting games and activities
  • Developing a personal action plan for change
Free teas/coffees and lunch will be provided.

Visit the Learning Exchange website for details or email to book your place.
Book your place at the NDNA Nursery Conference 2015 before 1 March and enjoy early bird rates. Our exciting range of speakers includes Claire Lomas, the ‘Bionic Woman’, describing her experience after being paralysed from the chest down before finishing the London Marathon wearing a pioneering robotic suit. Also speaking, expert on brain development and relationships Dr. Janet Rose, Children's Play and Early Development Specialist Dr. Andrew Lockett, Dr. Kevan Collins on making a difference in the lives of disadvantaged children, Dr Joseph Lightfoot of the Department of Health’s Physical Activity expert group and the new Childcare Minister. For more information and to take advantage of the early bird discount, click here.
Curious Minds
Strong Voices Conference, 6th of March 2015
  • Do ALL young people have an equal right to access your work?
  • Could your work contribute to the lives of disadvantaged and vulnerable young people?
  • Would you like to successfully target young people who find it harder to engage?
Then book your place now at the Strong Voice Conference
Participate in person, or online (you just need a computer with a good internet connection and speakers or headphones). 

Places are FREE and limited for both types of attendance, so click here now to secure your place.
NLH Partnership Event
Workshop: Effectively tracking Children’s Centre impacts
Thursday 19th March 2015 - London

Effectively tracking the impacts of Children’s Centre work for children and families is an increasingly important part of the assessment of Children’s Centres’ performance, and Ofsted requires Centres to provide high quality impact ‘tracking’ evidence in order to gain a ‘Good’ or ‘Outstanding’ grade. This workshop focuses on the various types of ‘tracking’ outlined in the latest Ofsted guidance, to provide attendees with a clear understanding of how to develop and implement effective systems and processes for tracking Children’s Centre impacts. Attendees leave the workshop with a thorough understanding of how to effectively meet key tracking requirements. 

For more information email here, or call 0207 7292206. Visit us here for more events and workshops.
Childcare & Early Learning Hubs Seminar - Birmingham
3rd March
Learn Explore Debate - Bristol  

4th March
Special Educational Needs & Disability LED - Birmingham
5th March
Inspiration Forum - Oxford

5th March
Childcare & Early Learning Hubs Seminar - London
6th March
Strong Voice Conference - Newcastle

6th March
Early Childhood Matters Conference - London

10th March
Creating an Inclusive Childcare Environment - Coventry
12th March
Achieving Excellence in Early Years - London

12th March
Learn Explore Debate - Northumberland

13th March
The Journey to Outstanding - Bolton

14th March
Special Educational Needs & Disability LED - Leeds
17th March
Special Educational Needs & Disability LED - Newcastle
18th March
Effectively Tracking Children's Centre Impact - London
19th March
Supporting Boys Development in the Early Years - Watford
19th March
Sharing Knowledge Seminar - Leeds

24th March
Special Educational Needs & Disability LED - Taunton
25th March
Sharing Knowledge Seminar - London

26th March
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