Early years report is a hit

Ofsted’s Early years: leading to excellence report has been attracting huge interest since its launch in August 2008.

Thousands of childcare providers are continuing to use the good practice highlighted in the report, which is available on the Ofsted website at: www.ofsted.gov.uk/Ofsted-home/Leading-to-excellence to help improve their provision.

Leading to excellence is the third review of inspections of registered childcare and early education provision between 2005 and 2008.

The review focuses on how providers organise, lead and manage their settings to promote positive outcomes for children and ensure they progress well. The previous two reports, Safe and sound and Getting on well, focused on what best practice looks like in helping children to be healthy, stay safe, enjoy themselves and achieve, and make a positive contribution.

The report identifies many positive features and highlights much good practice. In the best settings, children are at the heart of all that happens, environments are stimulating and adults are knowledgeable and continually striving to improve.

The response from those who have made improvements after reading Leading to excellence has been very positive.

‘A very inspiring report and something we keep referring back to in bettering our practices’


Here are some comments from early years and childcare providers:

‘Since reading this report we have begun developing greater links with parents and encouraging parents to play an active role in planning for learning.’

‘This report has helped us write our SEF [self-evaluation form] and look at what our priorities for improvement are. It has also confirmed for us as a nursery what we do well. A very inspiring report and something we keep referring back to in bettering our practices.’

‘The impacts have been that the children now have activities/resources/care that is more uniquely tailored to their specific needs and we have identified children who are ahead of their peers in many areas and those who need more support.’

‘In particular the 'questions to ask children/getting feedback' section at the end of the Leading to excellence document inspired all of our staff to think about meaningful ways of finding out about how children as young as two felt about their pre-school experience.’

‘Children are benefiting from more qualified and professional childcare’


‘Leading to excellence has been an invaluable tool for childminders in our area, whose confidence has grown, as has their understanding of the EYFS [Early Years Foundation Stage]. Their children are benefiting from more qualified and professional childcare.’

This feedback will help Ofsted plan our good practice booklets for childminders and day-care providers which will be published later this year.

To read or download the report, Early years: leading to excellence, visit: www.ofsted.gov.uk/Ofsted-home/Leading-to-excellence

Find out more about the Early Years Foundation Stage


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