Broadbent Maths
Broadbent Juggler
Sign In
Broadbent Maths
Broadbent Maths - creative primary maths

Early Years Foundation Stage Profile to remain as statutory

Sunday, 28 August 2016
What a year for EYFS teachers, after a year of preparing for the introduction of baseline assessment, it was dropped in April after problems with the pilot scheme and a generally negative response to it from schools. However, teachers were told that they could still use the baseline assessments if they wished. Then comes an announcement – in August! -  from the Standards and Testing Agency (STA) that the Early Years Foundation Stage Profile is to remain statutory for the academic year 2016/17.
Hopefully you have not thrown away any of your resources and reference materials for the EYFS profile. It would be understandable if you had, as throughout most of last year schools were told that it would not be needed, despite being a valuable early years assessment tool. Most teachers are hoarders of good ideas, so I’m sure many of you kept information that could be used for your own formative assessment.
Well, where to begin.

Timing -  making an announcement of this importance in August implies that schools and teachers require no time to plan and prepare for change, less than a month is unacceptable if it had been term-time but the fact that many teachers may be away on holiday makes it even worse.

Workload -  there has been such a waste of teachers' time this year with the preparation for the new baseline assessments  - and then just a return to the EYFS profile from the year before. Apart from the waste in time and effort the financial cost too should be remembered. 

Anyway... let's look to the future. 

Do you continue with baseline assessment alongside the EYFS profile?

In my article in April I advised that if schools had already prepared for the new baseline assessment then you could use it this year to get to grips with a new system without the pressure of the results being used as a starting point for measuring progress. It looked as if the funding would continue and, although there may be changes, this type of assessment would be introduced the following year.
Should you still use the baseline assessment now?
If you think they will be useful for your own formative assessment, then of course they will be of value. 
However if it will cause any disruption to learning and the important days of settling in then perhaps you should reconsider. There is no benefit trying a new system that may never be introduced.

What will happen next year?

The real problem is that there is no idea what will happen for 2017-18 and beyond. Will schools continue with the statutory EYFS profile or will a form of baseline assessment be re-launched? At the moment this change is for at least one year. It is likely that if a new system were to be introduced it would be in 2 or 3 years time. To get anything organised for next year, and even the following year, would be difficult. It would risk the repeat of current mistakes of launching a new system without proper trials in schools being completed and modified in line with the recommendations. Well at least we hope they would learn from the current confusion and delay until a new system is tested before it is introduced. 

Related articles

Baseline assessment 'unreliable and disruptive' - shows research on the pilot scheme
It is time-consuming,  had an impact on learning and nothing was gained that wouldn't have been identified anyway

Baseline assessments planned for September are dropped

The tests 'are not sufficiently comparable to create a fair starting point from which to measure pupils' progress.' 
Like us...
Follow us...
Connect with us...
Website design by SiteBuilder Bespoke