A brilliant presentation today by the Early Years Leadership and Learning Forum.
Baseline assessment will be statutory from 2016 but the sensible advice seems to be that you will need a really good reason not to do it in 2015. If you don’t baseline then that particular cohort will be judged solely on attainment without the ‘backup’ of progress: A dangerous game to play!
Best practice seemed to entail making sure you get your assessments in early therefore ensuring your target path does not come out too high. Schools seem to be trialling a range of assessments but DfE will publish a list of approved schemes in early 2015. I suppose the scheme we choose is up to us but my feeling is that we would all want to choose one that is ‘Early Years’ in nature i.e. based upon observations and age appropriate, as opposed to a ‘good old test’.
This baseline will mean that from 2016, the EYFS profile will no longer be compulsory.
Interestingly, the idea of ensuring that all the schools within a collaborative use the same baseline assessment was proposed. This would ensure some ‘safety in numbers’ and the opportunity to moderate and ensure clarity across the collaborative. A great idea and perhaps one that KS1 and KS2 assessment leaders might look to?