Early Years Policy

Rationale

There are five outcomes that are key to well being in childhood and later life….being healthy, staying safe, enjoying and achieving, making a positive contribution and achieving economic well-being.

Our ambition is to improve these outcomes for all children and narrow the gaps between those who do well and those who do not”

(Every Child Matters Change for Children 1.1 p4)

St Joseph’s recognises the importance of learning in partnership with parents, preschool settings and other agencies and understands that young children entering school have many years of learning ahead of them.

We therefore recognise the importance of starting school as a crucial transition in a child’s life and encourage children to become independent and confident learners with key people supporting the

” learning experience”.

This policy should be read in conjunction with the School Mission Statement, PSHE, Assessment, Equal Opportunities, Racial, Inclusion, AEN, Gifted and Talented and the Behaviour policies.

Aims

  • To make the transition from pre school to full time education as smooth as possible.
  • To provide a secure and caring environment that promotes and develops learning for all children and increases their independence and confidence.
  • To develop and nurture a working partnership between home and school.
  • To enable each child to develop their full potential.
  • Support children with additional educational needs and disabilities.

Parental Involvement/New Parents

We promote an ethos of partnership with parents and carer’s encouraging parents to be involved in all aspects of their child’s education.

New parents are invited to come to St Joseph’s prior to entry to meet the class teacher and the teaching assistant. The child is encouraged to meet new friends and become familiar with the organisation of the inside and outside classrooms.

During this visit parents are invited to meet with the head teacher, SENCO and class teacher. Other agencies are also invited so that concerns can be shared and discussed informally.

Your child will also be invited to come into school on our transition day in Term 6 between  9.30 and 10.30 am.  During this visit we encourage you to leave your child for an hour so that they can become familiar with the class teacher and teaching assistants.

Home Visits/Pre School Visits

Home visits are an important part of the transition from preschool setting to full time education.  An appointment is made that is convenient between both parties. The reception teacher will visit you and your child to discuss school visits, full time entrance, uniform and equipment, the child needs, and any other additional educational needs or concerns you have.

We also endeavour to visit key workers during term 6 and will attend some nurseries or playschools to visit children at their settings. Transition  meetings are also made between the school and local nurseries to discuss your child’s progress in line with the Foundation Stage curriculum.  These are informal visits, but are invaluable to the new class teacher and will help us to be better informed to support the transition process.

Related Issues

To ensure that children have the best start to school we endeavour to provide a setting that promotes independent learning, equal opportunities and a secure foundation for future learning.

Children are encouraged to access a range of resources and activities independently .The adults support and develop the children’s learning that is stage appropriate to the child’s understanding.

Starting school

  • Free school milk is available to all reception children under 5. Parents can order it online for their child. (You can contact the school office if you have any queries)
  • Children are given free fruit/vegetable during the day to promote healthy lifestyles and have a water bottle in class that they can access independently.
  • Children are encouraged to access a range of resources independently.
  • Children are collected from the School Reception area initially, by the end of Term 1 children will be collected from outside the classroom.
  • Children come into class with their parents initially by the end of term 1  children line up in their class line with the rest of the school.

Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum

The statutory framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage sets the standard for learning, development and care from birth to five years.

The principles that guide the work of practitioners are grouped into four complimentary themes

  • A Unique Child
  • Enabling Environment
  • Positive Relationships
  • Learning and Development

Our aim is to build upon these guiding themes and give each child a rich and personalised learning experience. We are alert to the individual needs of each child and intervene appropriately involving other agencies when necessary.

The Early Learning goals are divided into three prime areas:

  • Communication and Language
    Listening and attention
    Understanding
    Speaking
  • Physical Development
    Moving and handling
    Health and self-care
  • Personal, social and emotional development
    Self-confidence and self-awareness
    Managing feelings and behaviour
    Making relationships

There are four specific areas

  • Literacy
    Reading
    Writing
  • Mathematics
    Numbers
    Shape, space and measures
  • Understanding of the World
    People and communities
    The world
    Technology
  • Expressive arts and design
    Exploring and using media and materials
    Being imaginative

The Foundation Stage Curriculum is delivered through a range of child initiated and teacher directed tasks. Children are encouraged to be highly motivated in the learning process, interacting with their environment and with each other. Learning should be fun and mostly initiated by the child.

Assessment Procedures

The home visits assist in making informal assessments on each child.  We use the pre-school meeting with nurseries and playschools to help with our assessments, along with observations, discussions with pre-school settings and parents to make an initial assessment in the first term. Assessment is on going in the Foundation Stage and children are assessed against the statutory Foundation Stage Profile.

The child’s profile is updated at the end of each term after careful observations in child initiated and directed tasks that are linked to the seven areas of learning. The assessments are based upon teacher/adult judgements, and evidence is collected from a wide range of learning and teaching contexts.  All assessments are shared with the parents through report cards and at parent consultation evenings.  Parents are encouraged to come and share any concerns with the class teacher at anytime throughout the year.  Please contact the office for an appointment with the class teacher.

Children’s work and photo’s are an integral part of assessment and help to plan future learning experiences. Children’s work is often annotated and teachers will have conferences with the child to talk about next targets. Parents will be invited to an initial parent evening in term two and a second in term three. Parents will receive a progress report in term three and a final detailed report in term six. These reports cover all seven areas of learning stated in the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum.

Additional Educational Needs and Inclusion.

St Joseph’s  is committed to working with parents and other agencies to ensure that each child is supported, valued, and included in all aspects of school life. See AEN and Inclusion policies.

Date Reviewed
December 2016

Next Review Date
December 2017

Address

St Joseph's Catholic Primary School
St Peter’s Park Road
Broadstairs
Kent
CT10 2BA

Contact

Tel / Fax: 01843 861738
Email: info@st-josephs-broadstairs.kent.sch.uk

KCSP

Kent Catholic Schools Partnership
Website: kcsp.org.uk
Telephone: 01622 232662

Headteacher
Mrs Linda Briggs

 

Chair of Governors
Mr John Darby