The Reception Year: Best practice and the latest reforms

Written by: Neil Henty | Published:

The Battle for Reception? Is this most crucial of years about curriculum or about skills/child development? In this Best Practice Focus, we consider the latest on the controversial Reception Year reforms while dissecting what best practice looks like for Reception Year provision

As reforms to the Early Years Foundation Stage and the Early Learning Goals roll-out, tensions are high between early years professionals and government over the purpose of the Reception year.

In this Best Practice Focus, which can be downloaded for free below, Neil Henty sets out the challenges facing the Reception year and discusses some of the key tenets of best practice for ensuring that primary schools’ Reception provision is effective, research-evidenced and puts children’s needs at its heart.

The nine-page pdf download considers the most recent research into effective early years/Reception practice, including from Ofsted, as well as dissecting the debate over whether the Reception year should prioritise curriculum or child development.

Among the tenets of best practice, the author touches upon the role of the primary school senior leadership team, staff training and CPD, understanding child development, skills development, and championing the vital role of the Reception Year – a key stage in its own right.

This Best Practice Focus has been published with kind support from TG Escapes Eco-Buildings. You can visit our sponsor via

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