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The Foundation Stage Forum EYFS newsletter May 2019

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Well goodness it's the end of May - where did the time go?! We find ourselves hurtling towards the end of another school year. One of our colleagues attended their child's sports day this week, that surely means Summer is on its way! This half-term, nursery children found out where they will be going to go to school and the transition process starts in earnest. I know from our own experience that 'school readiness' is as applicable to the parents as it is to the children. The shared understanding of how to help a child do well is built up at nursery through the carefully managed key person approach and we strive to handover this shared understanding as we welcome new professionals into the relationship. You can share your transition successes on this thread

This week Ofsted published the final Education Inspection Framework after their careful consideration of consultation responses. If you haven't yet downloaded the new documents you can access them all from here. The supporting documentation is here. There has been a generally positive response to the final document with sector professionals broadly happy with the shift in focus away from data towards the overall quality of education settings are delivering. On the FSF we have linked to articles by June O'Sullivan of LEYF nurseries and Julian Grenier of Sheringham Nursery School both of which pose interesting questions to consider in the light of the new framework.

Again this half term the forum has been busy. We have welcomed several new members to conversations recently and it is lovely to see them find their forum feet and flourish! We're a very nice bunch so you needn't be shy - If you have an opinion in response to another person's question or you have a query yourself then just jump in and we'll all help you out! A thread started by a new member has provoked an interesting conversation, you can read it here

LA Scheme

We'd like to welcome back members from the following authorities, which have renewed their LA subscription. Members from these authorities need do nothing; their individual accounts will automatically be re-subscribed:

For their 7th year – Central Bedfordshire

For their 12th year – Derbyshire

New Content

This half term we have kept our courses and events page up to date with details of CPD being offered around the country as well as online. There is sure to be something that interests you! Some courses are completely free, others are more pricey, but we have advertised a great offer from Early Education for some extremely high quality training from some of the country's best trainers.

We have also published articles by Dr Lala Manners and FSF Jules. Dr Manners' article 'Supporting parents to understand the benefits of ‘risky’ play' helps us think of ways to demystify risk and challenge play for parents. We need to support parents to understand that 'risk and challenge' don't mean the same as 'dangerous'. FSF Jules' article suggests ways in which we can make the transition from Reception to Year 1 more manageable for the children and their parents. Jules explains that by starting the process early we can manage the expectations of children, parents and the teachers around them to ease the transition from one key stage to the next without creating anxiety for children and families and disharmony between teachers in schools. You can read Jules' article here.

We have also linked you to the Education Policy Institute report which has identified a sense of great uncertainty over recruitment and retention, with growing reports of workers switching to the retail sector, in order to secure more favourable working conditions. We have had some interesting responses on the forum with members reflecting the same experience.

From The Forum

Volatile child

Ok i'm struggling! we have a little boy 3 and a half who is incredibly volatile/violent! He has vary little  language and is starting to be seen by services (if his mother ever books him in!) I have tried loads of my tips and tricks (ABC charts/loading praise/ignoring bad behaviour etc etc) but we are not getting very far. Today I have been kicked my colleague has been punched  and we are just generally getting things thrown at us (bunch of keys at my head today) . This happens as soon as we make any demand on him (eg not allowing him to break our new table and chairs and asking him to take his boots off!!)


He can be really lovely as long as you let him do what he wants

Do you use themes when planning?


Just looking for a bit of advice. Do you use themes when planning? Obviously we cover the seasons, festivals etc but the staff are wanting to return to having weekly themes.

I'm unsure if this is the norm with other early years settings.

Any advice please???

Payment structure

So for the last 2 years we have implemented a 5 am/5 pm or 5 full day rule for bookings. This has worked quite well to protect our funds but we are now at a point that we would like to try and be more flexible with new parents

I am considering charging a higher fee for doing less hours.....so for 3 sessions say £20 and then for 4 sessions £17 etc...has anyone done anything like this and have any info?

Recruiting new committee members


I have been manager of our Pre-school for 25 years this year. We have gone from a parish hall run playgroup to a very busy pre-school who 8 years ago were lucky enough to be invited to operate in a purpose built fabulous area onsite at our local main feeder school. We are very busy, however the cuts in our funding by our LA have really hit us hard and for a while this year I was unsure whether we would survive, but fingers crossed we may be okay.

Since I started many moons ago, we have had a committee. Over the last 10 years we have had the same chairperson and 4 committee members who for 8 of those years have been amazing and supportive and everything we would wish for. However, it has been evident over the last  2 years that their interest has waned, as their children have grown up and they have other interests, who can blame them? Meetings are only held if I badger them and I write minutes etc . We are struggling to recruit new members and especially a chair. I am quite concerned about our situation but also feel irritated by it as to why it should this be my responsibility to recruit a committee. Does anyone else have a problem with recruiting committee members and do you have any suggestions? 

Final query, is there an easier way to complete EY2 registration forms? One new committee member I pestered to join us has had great difficulty? 

OFSTED Registration - taking over an existing nursery

Please could anyone contact me, I really could do with some help!

How long does it take? Our registered person is leaving soon!

First aid contents

What do you have in your box? What are the requirements?

Please any help, too much stuff just going out of date .

Thank you. 

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