P scales and EYFS points


Children and teacher using an abacus

How do P scales compare to the Early Years Foundation Stage scale points?

They don't. The P scales and the EYFS describe entirely different sets of children. Although the main milestones for learning may be the same, children under the age of five learn in different ways from older children who often know they are experiencing difficulties.

  • The natural 'child-led' learning of young children is known to be full of leaps of understanding, progress and making links between what is already known and what is being learned. The EYFS describes this approach to learning. 
  • Older children who are experiencing difficulties tend to benefit from much more structured, explicit teaching with devised opportunities to build on what has already been taught. The P scales characterise this approach to learning.

From the time they were written, there has been a clear distinction between EYFS and P scales. The recommendation is that children in Year 1 who have not yet achieved their Early Years Goals should continue to work with the EYFS approach. This is particularly true for summer-born children.

It is most likely that P scales won't be used to describe progress until the end of Year 1 at the earliest, to allow the EYFS to continue for children whose learning is a little delayed by immaturity or age.


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Last updated: about 3 years ago