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NEWS: Government publishes EYFS framework for September 2021

Today the Department for Education has published the new Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) statutory framework which will be laid before Parliament to come into force in England on 1 September 2021. The EYFS sets the standards that all early years providers in England must meet to ensure that children aged 0 to 5 learn and develop well and are kept healthy and safe.

During the Covid-19 pandemic the EYFS requirements were temporarily disapplied however providers were required to use ‘best endeavours’ to meet these.

The new framework for September 2021 follows a period of Government engagement and consultation with a range of stakeholders and experts. PACEY was actively involved in this to help shape the final published framework and identify the support practitioners required. Many PACEY members took time to share their thoughts with us and this has informed our response to government as well as the support we will provide to members. You can read PACEY’s response to the consultation in 2020 here.

The proposed changes had two aims:

  1. To improve outcomes at age 5, particularly in early language and literacy
  2. To reduce workload so that teachers can spend more time interacting with children in their care.

Read more about the new EYFS framework, including a summary of the changes to safety and welfare requirements on the Foundation Years website.

Liz Bayram, Chief Executive at PACEY comments:

“Government’s aim with these changes was “to strengthen early years curriculum, assessment and practice to improve outcomes for all children and close the gap for disadvantaged children”. Whilst there remains debate in the sector as to whether these revisions have achieved this or not, we believe it is now time to focus on how best to support practitioners to prepare for these changes. Ultimately the EYFS is a framework. It is for individual providers to shape the early years curriculum in their setting, so it best supports the children in their care.

“It’s PACEY’s priority now to support all our members in England with the information, guidance and training they will need to implement the EYFS with confidence. We are mindful that the introduction of the new EYFS, as well as the reintroduction of graded Ofsted inspections this summer could cause additional stress and increased workload for practitioners who have been working tirelessly to support children and families through the pandemic. All at a time when many are concerned about their future financial sustainability. So we are making sure that everything members will need to prepare is included as standard in their membership package. No need for PACEY members to buy additional training or support. We will be sharing more about our EYFS21 resources in April.”