2016 Early years foundation stage: assessment and reporting arrangements (ARA)

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Section 2: Early years foundation stage profile

An overview of the EYFS profile and information about completing the profile and exemptions from assessment

2.1 Overview of the EYFS profile

The EYFS profile handbook’ contains detailed information on the background and purpose of the EYFS profile. It also explains how practitioners should complete the profile.

Headteachers should make sure those involved in assessing the EYFS have a thorough understanding of the handbook.

2.2 Completing the EYFS profile

Practitioners must complete the EYFS profile for each pupil who will be 5 years old on or before Wednesday 31 August 2016 unless:

  • the Secretary of State has granted an exemption from the profile for the setting
  • the pupil is continuing in EYFS provision beyond the year in which they turn 5
  • the pupil has arrived from abroad less than 2 weeks before the profile submission deadline and so an accurate and valid assessment can’t be completed
  • the pupil has spent the majority of the academic year away from the setting, for example, due to illness or medical treatment

Practitioners should make profile judgements on the basis of cumulative observational evidence recorded over the course of the year. Profile summaries must be completed no later than Friday 1 July 2016.

2.3 Data collection and submission

EYFS providers may use any secure system to collect and submit EYFS profile data, as long as practitioners can record completed profile data for every pupil at the end of the EYFS. EYFS providers should agree a preferred system with their local authority (LA). This is available on request from the department and can be obtained by contacting the Data Collections Helpdesk using the Service Request Form.

National data submission

The following table sets out the requirements for submission of EYFS profile data and contextual pupil data to LAs and the Department for Education (DfE).

Status of pupil and setting Is submission of data to LA statutory? Is LA submission to DfE statutory?
Pupil in a maintained school yes yes
Pupil in EYFS provision who is in receipt of government funding in the 2016 summer term yes yes
Pupil in EYFS provision who is not in receipt of government funding in the 2016 summer term yes where requested by LA no
Pupil in an academy yes yes
Pupil in an independent school which is in receipt of government funding in the 2016 summer term yes yes
Pupil in an independent school which is not in receipt of government funding in the 2016 summer term yes where requested by LA no
Pupil with a registered childminder (for the majority of the time they spend within EYFS provision between 8am and 6pm yes where required by LA - or if the pupil is in receipt of government funding in the 2016 summer term no unless pupil in receipt of government funding in the 2016 summer term
Pupil in an independent EYFS provision where the setting has EYFS exemption yes on a voluntary basis no
Pupil being educated at home no unless on the register of a maintained/independent school and/or in receipt of government funding no unless on the register of a maintained/independent school and/or in receipt of government funding

The pupil’s name is not required from settings which are not in receipt of government funding. The LA is only required to submit data to the DfE for pupils who receive government funding in the 2016 summer term. The DfE will send full details of the data submission arrangements to LAs in early 2016. Settings and LAs are encouraged to return data to the DfE on a voluntary basis to help produce a full picture of pupils’ attainment.

2.4 Data specification

Assessment rating EYFS judgement
1 Indicates a pupil who is at the ‘emerging’ level at the end of the EYFS
2 Indicates a pupil who is at the ‘expected’ level at the end of the EYFS
3 Indicates a pupil who is at the ‘exceeding’ level at the end of the EYFS
A Indicates a pupil who has not been assessed due to long periods of absence, for instance a prolonged illness; a pupil who arrives too late in the summer term for teacher assessment to be carried out ie within 2 weeks of the data submission date; or a pupil who has an exemption

2.5 Exceptions

Exemptions from the assessment arrangements

All EYFS settings must participate in the assessment arrangements outlined in this ARA, unless the Secretary of State has granted an exemption If an exemption is granted for an individual pupil then this should be recorded as ‘A’ for each early learning goal (ELG) in their profile return.

Alternative assessments

The EYFS profile is an inclusive assessment. It can capture a wide range of pupils’ learning and development outcomes. Despite this, practitioners might find the observation and assessment of some pupils particularly challenging.

If a pupil is given an outcome of ‘emerging’, it might not provide the full picture about that pupil’s learning and development at the end of the EYFS. In these cases, extra information should be considered alongside EYFS profile judgements. This will ensure that conversations with key stage 1 staff are meaningful and help the pupil to make a successful transition.

There may be cases where it is not appropriate to make a judgement against an assessment scale, for instance if the pupil has recently arrived from abroad. In these cases, practitioners must use ‘A’ (for no assessment) when they submit the data to their LA.

Pupils who remain in EYFS provision beyond the age of 5

The expectation is that pupils will move with their peers so they will only be assessed once for the EYFS profile. In exceptional circumstances, after discussion and in agreement with parents, a pupil might remain in EYFS provision beyond the end of the academic year in which he or she reaches the age of 5. Providers should take care to make sure this decision does not prejudice the pupil’s personal, social and emotional development.

In these exceptional cases, assessment should continue throughout the pupil’s time within EYFS provision. An EYFS profile should be completed only once at the end of the year before the pupil moves into key stage 1.The setting should discuss their intention to defer the pupil’s statutory assessment with their LA EYFS profile moderation manager. This will ensure the pupil’s data is not considered missing when the setting submits EYFS profile outcomes for the current cohort.

Care should be taken when entering the pupil’s EYFS profile assessment into any electronic recording system. The pupil’s date of birth may now be outside the expected range for the cohort. LAs should give settings instructions in such cases. The DfE will consider the pupil to be part of this new cohort, and will accept data submitted in this way. The DfE may check the accuracy of the dates of birth of individual pupils with the relevant LA.