What is changing?

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) reforms and the new EYFS framework are due to become statutory in September 2021. It is intended that the reforms will support the social mobility ambitions of the government and improve outcomes for the most disadvantaged children to narrow development gaps at school entry. 

The reforms are also designed to reduce the bureaucracy in EY assessment and planning, allowing practitioners more time to spend developing a broad and rich curriculum, focusing on the needs of the children in their care. The new framework[1]  also incorporates specific Reception Year guidance and revised early learning goals to ensure children have strong foundations and are ready to begin the National Curriculum in Year 1. This framework, along with the new Development Matters[2] will take time to embed and the sector will need support to make this a smooth process. This is an even greater challenge when you consider that the EYFS in England is made up of a wide variety of institutions, unique in size, ethos, governance, and structure, but all required to deliver their provision using the EYFS framework.

The Study for Early Education and Development (SEED) [3], showed how strong leadership and a clear vision of what you are aiming to achieve was vital to developing quality Early Years practice. Quality CPD opportunities that are accessible to all is the only answer to ensuring all practitioners know and understand the new framework and are clear about its aims and intentions. Childminders, who often work alone, can be especially disadvantaged when it comes to accessing training opportunities, often reporting that training does not always meet their needs, as it is focussed on larger settings.

It is essential that training and development opportunities are representative of and accessible and affordable to all Early Years providers if the new reforms are to take root and have the intended impact.

The Achievement for All Early Years team

The team has extensive experience of working within and across the EY sector and has supported over 200 settings through the award-winning programme, Achieving Early, raising quality and improve outcomes for children in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS). Early Years coaches recognise that each setting is unique and tailor their approach to meet the needs of the setting staff and children, including offering support for childminders. This approach resulted in winning both a Nursery World award in 2015 for Inclusive Practice and the Children and Young People Now Early Years award in 2016.  The evidence of impact from the Achieving Early programme can be viewed  here .

What Achievement for All can offer

The AfA Early Years team is now offering tailored CPD opportunities for senior leaders and all Early Years staff in how to successfully implement the reforms in their school or setting.  Unlike general training offers the Early Years coach will work with leaders and staff to work out how to plan for and implement the changes you need in your school or setting, ensuring you get the right support to meet your needs. If you have a training budget in mind, we could work with you to identify your needs and deliver the best package possible within your price range, ensuring you get exactly what you need.

Please contact me to arrange an informal discussion of your implementation plans for the EYFS reforms, we would be delighted to help.

Best wishes


Maureen Hunt, Head of Early Years, Achievement for All



Some feedback from our schools and settings

“The training delivered … has been well prepared and professionally delivered.  She has maintained contact and supported us with our next steps, as a result we have been confident when organising the structured conversations and supporting the staff through the process.”

       Karen and Nicola  – The Oaks

As a setting we have revised how we monitor children’s development and devised a new tracking system which is more accurate and looks at the ‘whole’ child.

The Achieving Early Program has been valuable for all in the setting practitioners, parents/carers and most importantly the children.”

      Manager – Happy Days

“I don't know if you have heard of training being provided called ‘Achievement for all’. We are just undertaking the 6 months pilot program and it is amazing. There are many courses and training which boast how they support settings to engage with parents of vulnerable children, this course actually does. I really believe this training will enable our setting to make a difference to these children and bridge the cap in their development by using the skills and techniques offered.  

  With vulnerable children being the current topic of conversation within government and councils I thought I would just drop you a line, you may already have heard of it. Perhaps if there is funding available this training could be offered to all settings.

         Lorraine  - Hinckley Rd Primary

“Beginning the AFA programme in the Early Years has helped identify those children may have gone under the radar earlier and has enabled better outcomes for them in the future. 

We have had many children who have flourished as a direct result of being on the AFA programme and it is something we will continue to use. It has given them a good foundation for learning and has enabled parents to become more directly involved in their child's learning too.”

          Gemma, Pitmaston Primary


[1] DfE (2020) The Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage, EYFS reforms, early adopter version

[2] DfE (2020), Development Matters,  Non Statutory Curriculum Guidance for the Early Years Foundation Stage

[3] Callanan, M., Anderson, M., Haywood, S., Hudson, R. and Speight, S. (2017) Study of Early Education and Development: Good Practice in Early Education Research Report: Department for Education