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Was wondering if there is any advice out there on this one.


We are a Reception class in a primary school, and have been asked(told) in Writing and Reading to provide P level progress for our children. It is a whole school initiative so we are having to try. Where do we stand on this as my gut feeling is is inappropriate for our children, as it make them all appear on the SEN criteria!! We are obviously completing ELG's too, so paperwork is vile and being triplicated.


Any opinions/thoughts/advice would be welcome.






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There has been lots of discussion about P levels, which acknowledge your 'gut' feelings, so if you try a 'search forum posts' ( green bar- top right of screen) and type in P levels you should find the relevant posts.


I am not in a school, but preschool. Are your 'instructors' who are telling you to follow P levels aware of pre-foundation stage, BTTM ( Birth to three matters). This may be more suitable approach.


No doubt some reception members will come along shortly and be more useful in their advice.



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As Peggy says there have been a number of discussions about this subject the advice from the DFES is



Q14: Should we use p-scales for assessing special educational needs in the Foundation Stage?




P-scales were developed to reflect the achievement of children in key stage 1 and beyond whose additional needs meant they were not achieving National Curriculum level 1. They should not therefore be used in the Foundation Stage for formative or summative assessment.


Where children are not achieving any of the Foundation Stage Profile scales then alternative assessment applies both in the Foundation Stage. These alternative assessments may relate to demonstrating progress using the stepping stones or Birth to Three Matters, whatever is pertinent to the individual child.


In the Foundation Stage it is important to remember that the stepping stones and early learning goals are not hierarchical. It is not appropriate to implement a deficit model. This means that the concept of being 'two stages behind' cannot be used in the Foundation Stage.


In some local authorities, it appears that special educational needs teams may be required to provide 'hard data' for the purposes of statutory assessment. If this is so, then it is important to explore the processes surrounding the statutory panel, and not try to create inappropriate assessment systems for children in order to meet the requirements of the panel.

Edited by Marion
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I've just had a discussion about P levels with both my SENCO and the local authority. P levels are appropriate for children in Year one and above with Special Needs NOT those still in the Foundation Stage. The reason for P levels is that they give the chance for practitioners to identify more accurately the reasons for any child being stuck on the 'W' level of the National Curriculum.

As a parent to be told your child is simply working towards starting the national curriculum isn't very helpful whereas an analysis of where they are on the P levels may be extremely helpful.


They should absolutely NOT be used for children below Year One - we are actually going to to continue to use the Profile statements until children are 6. From then if they have not achieved ELG's and are being assessed as 'W' then a further assessment will be used against the 'P' scales.


For children with a statement we will also use the 'P' scales from entry into Year One to be able to measure their progress more accurately.

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Guest tinkerbell

I agree with all the advice.

I was in a situation last summer where a child in my reception class was finally diagnosed with autism and all the experts ( LEA head psych, etc)came to a meeting in the last summer term.I was asked where he was on the P scales? I said he is not on the P scales he is on the foundation stage curriculum ,6 areas of learning .I gave them those point where he was.I was seething but professional. :o


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  • 2 months later...
Guest Wolfie

I've just been on the Featherstone Education website and there's a new publication on there about including children working on the P scales in the Foundation Stage? :o

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