EYFS and exemption(25 Posts)
I have just found out about the introduction of EYFS. When it was all discussed initially in threads I had a new born and a very sick father to look after. Now DS is at a great childminder and seems to thrive in her company. She told me recently that she would have to monitor DS in accordance with the new EYFS from Sept. I have looked into this in a lot of detail and frankly don't want my DS monitored in any formal way until he is at least 5 years old. It appears to be targets gone mad and I was wondering if anyone had successfully applied for exemption for a single child?
Particularly interested to hear from mrz if you are out there? Thanks.
as far as I know you don't get to have your child exempted from EYFS if you have state registered child care like child minder or nursery.
It's a big reason why some childminders were talking about leaving the profession when the government were talking about bringing it in - because they weren't dead pleased about the paperwork and the intrusion.
I might be wrong about this, but you might get around it by making a deal with your childminder where it's "regular babysitting" rather than "childminding". Might that do the trick? Ask the child minder if there's any way around.
I couldn't understand why there wasn't more protest when this all came out before, TBH.
Thanks for the option. I will speak to my CM, but I got a strong steer from our early years person at the LEA that it is compulsory and that if she didn't carry out the monitoring and assessment that makes up EYFS that she would be going against legislation and therefore get into trouble legally. I know that Nannies don't count in EYFS, so had thought about employing her as a part time nanny, but other parents who have children in her care don't appear to share my concerns about early assessments of children, so this wouldn't really work.
There is actually less monitoring with the EYFS than thing like "birth to three matters" that it replaced. Much less paperwork for the nurseries/child minders. My feeling is that lazy journalists spun the introduction of EYFS as part of the whole SATS/over centralisation/targetting agenda in education when in fact it is nothing of the sort.
I appreciate that some people may not object to their children being assessed in 117 different ways on an annual basis, but I do. I am just trying to find out how other people have approached exemption. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, it is mine that targets for under 5s are not the way forwards for early years education. This thread was not intended to open a debate about EYFS, that has been done to death already by the looks of things, I am just looking for advice. BTW I have read cover to cover the Statutory Framework for EYFS that was published by the government and it does list assessments and targets (sections 2.6- 2.26) which is why I have concerns.
its not on an annual basis though is it? its just once at the end of reception class.
They will be looking at all children from birth to five, but do not expect children to have reached the targets until they are five - that is my interpretation of the literature I have read from the government. My CM will have to observe and report on the 117 points from Sept when DS will be 11 months. Obviously you are in favour, and I appreciate your stance, I am just asking for advice on opting out which appears to be more complicated than it really should be.
Like I said, I think the government has made it impossible for professional child care providers to opt out, whether they are private or state-run.
I would be exploring finding a nanny, if they are exempt, or a child minder planning to reclassify themselves as a nanny because they, like you, object to the assessments.
117 different ways. Splendid.
Do you have to have your child in child care? If not, then keeping them at home until compulsory school age, and taking them to playgroups and things, might be an alternative. You could even find a couple of like minded friends and do very regular playdates with each other which - goodness me! - would enable everyone to work part time while someone else was in charge of 2 or 3 children.
Unfortunately I need to work. My DS is looked after by both a CM and my mum. My mum is not able to look after him full time as it is fairly exhausting. I chose the CM route as it offered the home from home atmosphere I wanted and he loves it there so I would be very reluctant to remove him and try and find a nanny. Have spoken to CM about reclassification, but I am the only one of her parents who has a strong disagreement and I couldn't afford to pay her all myself, indeed I wouldn't want to interfere with the care of any of the other kids she looks after...she is very special.
Beverly Hughes announced last month that settings /childminders can apply for a temporary exemption and that parents can apply on grounds of religion of philosophical conflict www.standards.dfes.gov.uk/eyfs/site/requirements/exemptions.htm for details
Oh, mrz that is good news. Only a little bit of good news, but good news nonetheless.
She also announced a review of some of the Language and Literacy goals led by Jim Rose and that the whole document will/may be reviewed a year on.
The people leading the request for EYFS' status to be reduced to guidance rather than a statutory curriculum aren't "lazy journalists" as witchandchips seems to believe but more than 80 highly respected educationalists, they included psychologists Dr Penelope Leach and Steve Biddulph, academics Professor Pat Broadhead, Tricia David and Janet Moyles, psychoanalyst and writer Susie Orbach and educationalist Margaret Eddington and educationalist and author of Toxic Childhood, Sue Palmer.
i think the point i was making here was that the foundation stage and the non statutory birth to three matters (that preceded EYFS)
were essentially the same in their demand for assesement + paperwork for providers.
The only difference i can see (but i could be wrong) is the requirement on childminders, but they were covered by legislation (such as minumum ratios and health and safety) aleady and assessed by OFSTED on much the same criteria so in practice i cannot see much change
The main difference is that until September it is just guidance and settings and child minders could choose to use it (or not) but from September everyone must follow it (unless exemption is granted) whether it is what parents want or not. The issue is whether it should become a statutory requirement (removing an element of parental choice) or remain guidance and allow parents the choice of child care (formal or homely)
point taken mrz
(and by the way i am in general very much against over assesement of young children + too much paper work for childcare workers but have been persuaded by the people at my ds's nursery that the EYFS is actually less burdensome + clearer about the need for play + allowing for differences across settings and children then the things it will replace)
I don't have anything against the concept of creating a single set of guidance for practitioners working with this age group but feel that it should be guidance and that those working with young children should have been listened to at the consultation stage rather than having the situation we are now in, with a document that has been revised before it even comes into force (because it was ambiguous and contained so many contradictions and errors) and the need to review it's content further (as promised by Beverly Hughes by Jim Rose) with a further hint that it may even be scrapped a year down the line.
Thanks for all your messages, particularly mrz. My CM has asked her national association for guidance on how to deal with the situation until exemption is (hopefully) granted, but they told her that they have only had one other phone call about this in the past month. Clearly I am just an awkward customer, but she is supportive of my right to choose what I want for DS which is great.
I am correct in my reading of the guidance notes that I just have to apply in writing to my CM laying out my concerns and why I want my DS exempted. She then has to make a decision with advice from the local authority, but ultimately it is her decision?
Sorry if I am being a bit dense...DS is teething which means I am suffering from a slight lack of sleep!
My CM is early years funding registered and tbh although she does the monitoring and sets targets, they are very basic observations and a very much just to fulfill the formality of having to do them (although they are accurate etc)
It really isn't a bid deal IMO - I read it and sign to say I've received it and bin it tbh.
I found it very useful when she looked after my dd with speech delay as it was mutually beneficial for her to do her exercises with her (looked good to ofsted and EYFS) and it dd responded better to someone other than us doing them with her.
Yes, but the EYFS, being newly introduced this September, is somewhat more prescriptive, as I understand it.
To the OP - I had a look at the guidelines for exemption, and you CAN apply, through the CM, for an exemption for your individual child. It looks like a right faff - you have to say each of the goals that you don't agree with and want your child exempted from, and why. They are making it really difficult for individuals to opt out.
Here's the official text:
Exemptions in Respect of an Individual Child
47. Parents can apply for an exemption for their child where they feel that the learning and development requirements of the EYFS conflict with their religious or philosophical convictions, the parent must apply to the provider whose setting that their child attends/will attend.
48. Everyone who is a parent, as defined in section 3 above, has the right to participate in decisions about a childs care and education, even though for day to day purposes, the providers main contact is likely to be the person with whom the child lives. As the decision may have a long term and significant impact on the child, providers must seek consent from both parents in cases where the parents do not live together and where the non-resident parent has informed the provider that he / she wishes to be approached for consent.
49. In a case where the provider has sought consent from both parents it is possible that one gives consent and the other withholds it. In this case the non-resident parents views should be taking into account by the provider, and if it is clear that the other parent does not agree, the provider should take that into account when deciding whether or not to grant the exemption.
50. Prior to making an application, parents should discuss their concerns with the provider or prospective provider. In the majority of cases it should be possible to accommodate parents religious and philosophical convictions within the EYFS framework. Following discussions with the provider, if parents still feel that there is a case for exemption, they should write to the provider, clearly setting out:
For each element of the learning and development requirements for which exemption is sought, the reasons why it is felt to be in conflict with the parents philosophical or religious convictions;
For each early learning goal and/or area of learning and development which is considered to be in conflict, how the parent would like this to be resolved either through exemption or modification of specific early learning goals.
51. Parents may only submit applications for exemption or modification in respect of their own children. A provider may only make a determination on an individual basis. Blanket applications may not be granted, as regulations prescribe that such an exemption may only be determined in respect of a particular young child.
52. Providers can only consider an exemption where a written application has been received from the parent. Providers must then seek the views of their local authority as to whether they should grant the exemption, and should take account of those views in reaching their decision.
53. Providers are not obliged to exempt children from the EYFS. Where an exemption is not agreed, the parent may seek alternative provision for their child, or choose to accept provision within the EYFS from the current/prospective provider.
54. Where providers do decide to exempt a specific child, they must inform their local authority of their decision, setting out which elements of the EYFS learning and development requirements they are granting an exemption from and the nature of the exemption, and provide written confirmation to the parent. Exemptions should be backdated to start on the day that the parent submitted the written application. On inspection, the onus will be on providers to show Ofsted inspectors that any exemptions have been properly granted. Ofsted may ask to see:
the application letters from the childs parent together with copies of any correspondence and notes of discussions with the parent about the exemption;
full records of the providers consultation (copies of letters and notes of discussions) with the local authority as well as the notification of their decision; and
the determination made by the provider which exempts the child, stating the date on which the exemption began, the length of time for which the exemption has been granted and which early learning goals and or areas of learning and development have been disapplied/modified.
55. Ofsted will expect providers to demonstrate that their setting is able to meet the full requirements of the EYFS regardless of any exemptions which are in place in respect of particular children.
56. The provider can only grant an exemption for a maximum of 12 months. At the end of this period, if the child still attends the same early years provision, the parents should consider, and discuss with the provider, whether they still feel an exemption is required, and submit a new application if so. It is important to recognise that it is possible that an exemption may no longer be required, for instance because the parents views have changed or because they may no longer feel it is necessary as the child grows older.
57. The local authority has discretion to decide whether or not to fund the setting to provide the free early education entitlement to individual children who are exempt from one or more of the learning and development requirements. Further guidance on this is set out in the guidance to local authorities in Section 5.
I have written my letter to my CM and she is happy to respect my wishes. She has to inform the local authority about my wishes, and that I have applied for exemption, but I think that it is down to her whether I get exemption or not reading the guidance notes. It is a bit unclear so I will phone the government department on Monday.
I understand where you are coming from CarGirl. My CM keeps my updated on my DS development, I just have a real issue with the prescriptive nature of EYFS and the fact that each child has to be observed on so many different things. I just want us all to enjoy his formative years rather than be worrying about whether all the observations have been carried out. My main sticking point is the targets for rising fives. I just hope that this has been abolished by the time my DS is 4.
It was 5 years ago so she may not still be childminding!
I realise how long ago this was written! It is so rare for parents to even know they can apply for exemption let alone achieve exemption that I was curious as to whether this mother succeeded. I have not yet found any evidence online of anyone achieving this.
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