The Department for Education published the revised Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) on 31 March 2014. In this article we review how the EYFS 2014 affected out of school clubs when it came into effect on 1 September 2014.
Key changes in EYFS 2014
For out of school clubs on the Early Years Register, the key points to note from EYFS 2014 are as follows:
- If your club cares for children who are in the Reception year or older, all qualification requirements (ie Level 3 or Level 2 qualifications in childcare or playwork) for managers and staff have been removed. Instead it will be up to the provider to decide on what childcare or playwork qualifications they want their staff to have. (para 3.40)
Note that other training requirements remain in force, for example you still need staff with paediatric first aid training, food hygiene training, child protection training, etc.
If children who are younger than Reception age attend your club, then the usual Early Years staffing qualification requirements will still apply with regards to those children.
- If your club cares for children who are in the Reception year or older, the minimum staff ratio for out of school clubs will become 1:30. (para 3.40)
Note that this is the statutory minimum ratio, not necessarily a recommended ratio. It will be up to the manager of a club to decide on the appropriate staffing ratios necessary to meet the other requirements of the EYFS, such as keeping children safe, and within sight or hearing at all times. If you want repeat business at your club you will also need to ensure that you have sufficient staff to keep children engaged and happy, and to keep parents satisfied with your service. Remember also to check your club insurance as many insurance companies specify a minimum staff ratio as a condition of their insurance cover.
If children who are younger than Reception age attend your club, then the usual Early Years staff:child ratios (ie 1:8) will still apply for those children.
- Out of school clubs will not need to meet the EYFS learning and development requirements. This means that there will be no requirement to deliver the EYFS 'curriculum' or to observe and assess the EYFS children. The exemption from delivering the EYFS curriculum also applies to children younger than Reception age who attend your out of school club. (para 3.40)
- The duty to make a referral to the DBS where a member of staff has been dismissed has been clarified. (para 3.14)
- The situations within which a member of staff at your club could become disqualified have also been clarified (para 3.15) as has your duty to notify Ofsted if this happens. (para 3.16)
- The specific requirement to hold regular staff appraisals, which was introduced in EYFS 2012, has been removed.
- It is no longer sufficient for a person with a paediatric first aid certificate to just be on the premises during your session, they must now be available at all times and able to respond quickly to incidents. (para 3.25)
- Paediatric first aid training courses no longer need to be approved by your Local Authority, but the course must cover the same content as St John Ambulance or Red Cross paediatric training. (para 3.35)
- Your club is no longer required to have a named behavior management coordinator, or to have a specific behaviour management policy. (para 3.52)
- The specific requirements for the safety of premises and equipment have been slimmed down. In addition EYFS 2014 no longer specifies that you must have a health and safety policy. (para 3.54)
Note however that you do still need to have a written health and safety policy under the Health and Safety at Work Act if you employ more than five members of staff.
- The requirement to have a no smoking policy has been removed, but you must still prevent everyone from smoking on the premises. (para 3.56)
- Early Years settings must now only provide an 'adequate' number of toilet and wash basins. (para 3.60) No indication is given as to what constitutes 'adequate'.
- The requirement for a written risk assessment policy has been removed from EYFS 2014 but providers must still be able to demonstrate how they are managing risks. (para 3.64)
Note however that you do still need to have a written risk assessments under the Health and Safety at Work Act if you employ more than five members of staff.
Remember that these changes to the EYFS safeguarding and welfare requirements only come into effect on 1 September 2014. Until then you still need to meet all the requirements of EYFS 2012.
Key Changes Guide
There are a few other very minor changes that also apply to out of school clubs. For full details of these, together with all the changes listed above, plus tips on how to implement the changes and cross-references to the policies and procedures that may be affected by these changes, see our Key Changes Guide 2014.
Download the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage 2014