1.1 Explain the legal status and principles of the relevant early year’s frameworks and how national and local guidance materials are used in settings. Children deserve and need the best possible start in their lives in order for them to fulfil their full potential in their learning and development (Terry, 2009). A happy, healthy and supportive childhood will help children to achieve the best that they possibly can (Smeyers and Wring, 2007). In 2003 the Laming Report was written following a very serious case of child abuse involving a girl called Victoria Climbie who was physically abused by her great aunt and another adult male. The abuse was so bad, a doctor involved in Victoria’s post mortem stated that “there really is not anywhere that is spared – there is scarring all over the body.” The report then goes on to explain how the local authorities involved in the care of this young girl were to blame for her death, as there was evidence of deliberate harm and nothing was done. The local social services department dealing with her case closed it on the day that she died.
Following the Laming Report the government green paper was written in 2003 ‘Every Child Matters’ (ECM). The aims of this were to reduce the occurrences of education failure, ill health, abuse and neglect, teenage pregnancy, substance misuse and crime and anti-social behaviour among children and young people. It also gave children a voice and allowed them to decide what they want by creating the five outcomes, which are: * Being healthy
* Staying safe
* Enjoying and achieving
* Making a positive contribution
* Economic well-being
The Children Act 2004 enabled the ‘Every Child Matters’ to be established and was written next in order to provide the legislative spine on which the reform of children’s services is based. ‘It aims to improve and integrate children’s services, promote early intervention, provide strong leadership and bring together different professionals in multi-disciplinary teams in order achieve positive outcomes for children and young people and their families.’ (Surrey County Council, 2004)
Next came the Childcare Act 2006 which gave a new role to local authorities in the improvement of the ‘Every Child Matters’ outcomes, providing childcare for working parents and providing parental information services (DoE, 2012). This act also introduced the inspection of childcare premises and the registration of childcare workers as a must (OFSTED, 2012). This was then, when the implementation of the EYFS came into play.
The ‘Early Years Foundation Stage’ was brought in to achieve the five ECM outcomes and it did this by: * Setting the standards for learning and care received in child care settings * Providing for equality of opportunity and ensuring that all practice is anti-discriminatory and all children are included in activities despite culture, race, religion and gender * Working in partnership with parents and also maintaining multi-agency working to ensure the best possible education and care for children * Improving quality and consistency to give all child care settings a universal set of standards that must be followed and also giving the right to have all settings inspected * Laying a secure foundation for each child’s future learning and development to be planned around the child’s individual needs and interests” (DfCSF, 2008)
There are six areas that are covered by the EYFS and they must all be taken in to account as they are very important in each child’s development. These areas are: * Personal, social and emotional development
* Communication, language and literacy
* Problem-solving, reasoning and numeracy
* Knowledge and understanding of the world
* Physical development
* Creative development
(Meggitt et al, 2011)
The 4 themes of the EYFS highlight how we can help children to develop and learn and enjoy...