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Quality in childcare
The aim of North Yorkshire's Children and Young People's Service is to enable every young person to be as fulfilled and independent as possible. In practice this involves hard work and determination to provide children with good quality experiences from birth, which they will carry through with them to adulthood.
The quality of childcare provision can be aided and measured in a variety of ways:
If the provision is registered and regulated by the Office for Standards in Education (Ofsted) they will be inspected following the guidance of The Early Years Foundation Stage. The Early Years Foundation Stage includes practice guidance and a statutory framework for the learning, development and care of children aged from birth to five.
If the provision is not registered with Ofsted they can access the Early Years Foundation Stage in order to promote good practice.
The Playwork Principles offer guidance to those provisions caring for children out of school.
What is the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)?
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) came into force in England from September 2008. It provides the standards for learning, development and care for all those looking after children from birth up until the 31st August following their fifth birthday. It means parents can be confident that when they choose childcare from an Ofsted registered provision (such as childminders, day nurseries, playgroups and schools) they know that the provision will be inspected against common standards in learning, development and care.
The EYFS is a coherent and flexible framework, covering all aspects of learning, development and care. It is based around four 'Themes':
Each Theme is linked to an important Principle which underpins effective practice in the care and development of babies and young children:
A Unique Child
Learning and Development
For more information please see the leaflet "It's child's play", available to download under useful downloads at the bottom of this page.
What are the Playwork Principles?
The Playwork Principles establish the professional and ethical framework for playwork, and describe what is unique about play and playwork, and provide the playwork perspective for working with children and young people.
They are based on the recognition that children and young people's capacity for positive development will be enhanced if given access to the broadest range of environments and play opportunities:
1. All children and young people need to play. The impulse to play is innate. Play is a biological, psychological and social necessity, and is fundamental to the healthy development and well being of individuals and communities.
2. Play is a process that is freely chosen, personally directed and intrinsically motivated. That is, children and young people determine and control the content and intent of their play, by following their own instincts, ideas and interests, in their own way for their own reasons.
3. The prime focus and essence of playwork is to support and facilitate the play process and this should inform the development of play policy, strategy, training and education.
4. For playworkers, the play process takes precedence and playworkers act as advocates for play when engaging with adult led agendas.
5. The role of the playworker is to support all children and young people in the creation of a space in which they can play.
6. The playworker's response to children and young people playing is based on a sound up to date knowledge of the play process, and reflective practice.
7. Playworkers recognise their own impact on the play space and also the impact of children and young people's play on the playworker.
8. Playworkers choose an intervention style that enables children and young people to extend their play. All playworker intervention must balance risk with the developmental benefit and well being of children.
Playwork Principles Scrutiny Group, Cardiff 2005
Ofsted inspect providers across education, children's services, adult learning and skills. The inspection reports explain what the Ofsted Inspector finds when they inspect a provider. Ofsted publish these reports on their website; however, in some cases the provider also has to provide Ofsted inspect providers across education, children's services, adult learning and skills. The inspection reports explain what the Ofsted Inspector finds when they inspect a provider. Ofsted publish these reports on their website; however, in some cases the provider also has to provide the report on request.
The specific content of a report will depend on the type of inspection; a typical inspection report will describe the provider, then go on to explain about the inspection findings and judgements with the grades given by the inspector.
For more information on how Ofsted inspect providers, go to the relevant section to find out about how Ofsted inspect and what is in inspection reports.