Early years foundation stage profile return: how to submit data

How local authorities should submit data from early years providers to complete the early years foundation stage profile (EYFSP) return.

The early years foundation stage profile (EYFSP) return is a statutory data collection of EYFSP assessments. Local authorities must complete statutory data collections by law unless there’s a good reason not to.

The EYFSP is an assessment of children’s development and learning at the end of the reception year.

To submit the EYFSP return, you must send assessments for all children getting early education at a state-funded early years setting, including:

  • settings that are part of a local-authority-maintained school
  • settings that are part of an academy or free school
  • all private, voluntary and independent organisations that offer education for children aged under 5, including nurseries and childminders

Early years settings are organisations that offer education for children aged under 5.

Important dates

Dates for the 2018 return:

  • collection opens: 4 June 2018
  • deadline for submitting data: 7 September 2018

Submit your data

Once the return has opened, you should submit your data using COLLECT, our centralised data collection and management system.

Note that we’ll only be able to change the status of your data submission to ‘authorised’ once you’ve cleared all errors in the data in COLLECT.

Return documents

The following documents will help you complete the return:

If you are looking for guides from past EYFSP returns, visit the ‘Early years foundation stage profile return: closed collections’ page.

Do you need help?

Submitting data

Please use the service request form if you have any questions about your data. We aim to answer your question within 5 working days.

Accessing COLLECT

Reset your Secure Access login details using the forgotten password or username form.

Please contact your school or local authority approver, if:

  • you want to request a Secure Access username or password so you can access COLLECT
  • ‘early years foundation stage profile (EYFSP) return’ is not on the list of collections you can see in COLLECT

If you do not know who your approver is, please use the Secure Access service request form.


Please use the feedback form if you have any comments about our data collection service, including COLLECT and the helpdesk service.

Published 25 March 2014
Last updated 25 May 2018 + show all updates
  1. Added link to the 'Early years foundation stage profile return: guide' under 'Return documents'.
  2. Changed the deadline for submitting data.
  3. Updated dates for the 2018 return and added the 2018 technical specification.
  4. Added link to 2017 EYFSP return guide
  5. Updated dates for the 2017 return and added the 2017 technical specification.
  6. Added a link to the provisional list of providers that local authotities need to check before the retrun opens on 6 June 2016.
  7. Added links to the 2016 local authority guide and COLLECT guide.
  8. Updated dates for the 2016 return and added the 2016 technical specification.
  9. Added 'EYFSP return 2015: COLLECT guide' link.
  10. Added a link to 'Early years foundation stage profile return 2015: guide'.
  11. Updated the important dates for 2015. Added a link to the 2015 technical specification.
  12. Updated to include link to 'EYFSP return 2014: guide'.
  13. Added a link to 'EYFSP return 2014: COLLECT guide'.
  14. First published.