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Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage

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Department for Education (UK)
government document
Publication Date: 
1 Mar 2012


Every child deserves the best possible start in life and the support that enables them to fulfil their potential. Children develop quickly in the early years and a child's experiences between birth and age five have a major impact on their future life chances. A secure, safe and happy childhood is important in its own right. Good parenting and high quality early learning together provide the foundation children need to make the most of their abilities and talents as they grow up.

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) sets the standards that all early years providers must meet to ensure that children learn and develop well and are kept healthy and safe. It promotes teaching and learning to ensure children's ‘school readiness' and gives children the broad range of knowledge and skills that provide the right foundation for good future progress through school and life.

This framework is mandatory for all early years providers (from 1 September 2012): maintained schools, non-maintained schools, independent schools, and all providers on the Early Years Register.


Section 1 - The learning and development requirements
Section 2 - Assessment
Section 3 - The safeguarding and welfare requirements