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Ofsted calls on government to review the EYFS

By Shannon Hawthorne

Ofsted has called on the government to review the EYFS to include a clearer focus on reading, writing and maths in a new report, titled 'Bold beginnings: The Reception curriculum in a sample of good and outstanding primary schools'.
The report argues that the Department for Education (DfE) should review the EYFS and the EYFS Profile and bring Early Learning Goals more in line with the national curriculum for Year 1.
"Missed opportunity"
Ofsted has also argued that reception year is a "missed opportunity" for too many children who are at risk of being left "falling behind their peers".
The findings are based on feedback from inspectors who visited 41 'good' or 'outstanding' primary schools in England in the summer term of 2017 and analysed inspection reports from 150 'inadequate' or 'requiring improvement' primary schools inspected in 2016/17.
Ofsted said that reception leaders were "much clearer about their expectations for children's literacy than for mathematics". The report argues that the DfE should "raise the profile" of maths teaching and make a similar investment in resources and schemes as it has with literacy.
Broader skills
The Alliance has voiced concern over the report. Chief executive Neil Leitch said that it was "disappointing" that the report had focused on aligning the reception year with Key Stage 1 and literacy and mathematics.
Neil said: "While both skills are of course vital for early development, research has shown that a focus on them over and above broader skills such as physical development and personal, social and emotional development, is likely to be detrimental to children's early learning experiences."
 "We urge both the government and Ofsted to work with early years experts to ensure that the reception year is focused on all the skills that children will need during their primary years, and throughout their longer educational journeys."
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