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Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) - progress checks

All early years settings – such as nurseries, playgroups and childminders - that are registered with Ofsted have to follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS). The EYFS is a legal framework that states all registered early years settings must have arrangements in place to support children with SEN or disabilities. This includes providing you with a written progress check when your child is 2 years old, ongoing observations of your child’s progress, and a written assessment in the summer term of reception year in school.

Progress check at age 2

When a child is aged between two and three, early years practitioners must review progress and provide parents with a short written summary of their child’s development, focusing in particular on communication and language, physical development and personal, social and emotional development. This progress check must identify the child’s strengths and any areas where the child’s progress is slower than expected. If there are significant emerging concerns (or identified SEN or disability) practitioners should develop a targeted plan to support the child, involving other professionals such as, for example, the setting’s Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO).

The summary must highlight areas where:

• good progress is being made

• some additional support might be needed

• there is a concern that a child may have a developmental delay (which may indicate SEN or disability)

It must describe the activities and strategies the provider intends to adopt to address any issues or concerns. If a child moves settings between the ages of two and three it is expected that the progress check will be undertaken in the setting where the child has spent most time.

Health visitors currently check children’s physical development milestones between ages two and three as part of the universal Healthy Child Programme. In September 2015, an integrated review was introduced that covers the development areas in the Healthy Child Programme two-year review and the EYFS two-year progress check.

The integrated review will:

• identify the child’s progress, strengths and needs at this age in order to promote positive outcomes in health and wellbeing, learning and development

• enable appropriate intervention and support for children and their families, where progress is less than expected, and

• generate information which can be used to plan services and contribute to the reduction of inequalities in children’s outcomes

Assessment at the end of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) – the EYFS profile

The EYFS profile provides parents, practitioners and teachers with a well-rounded picture of a child’s knowledge, understanding and abilities. A profile is usually completed for children in the final term of the reception year. It is particularly helpful for children with SEN and should inform plans for future learning and identify any additional needs for support.

More information about SEN in the early years is available from Chapter 5, Early years providers, in the 0-25 SEND Code of Practice.

You can also contact the Early Years Team at the Local Authority for general information about childcare on 01628 796684 or by emailing

Who to contact

Contact Name
Early Years Team, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead

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