A Study in Changing Policy and Education

This paper is traveling to discourse the early old ages policy within instruction today. It acknowledges the new authorities that has come in topographic point believe the Foundation Stage model is no longer the statutory demand to be used in schools today ( DfE, 2010 ) . However, some of the cardinal arguments in the policy and the quandary practicians have faced. The principle for to analyze the early old ages policy relates to the purpose of the policy. Throughout the old ages at that place have been many alterations within the early old ages policy although there are still some facets which remain the same. Boyle and Bragg ( 2006 ) argue that many facets of old policies such as a ‘target driven curricular theoretical account ‘ remain present today although some of them are ‘grotesquely inappropriate ‘ today ( Moss, 2003 ) . Palaiologou ( 2010 ) research suggested the demand for raising farther policy and course of study development within early old ages. However, alterations in early old ages proviso began as a manner to cut down poorness and to assist kids to hold better chances in life. The conservative authorities aimed to supply a better start in life for disadvantaged kids, utilizing instruction as a tool. The authorities gave instruction as a manner of assisting kids break the ‘cycle of want ‘ ( Baldock et al. , 2009 ) . However, Cohen et Al. ( 2004 ) found there was a split duty between public assistance and instruction in early old ages services. Therefore, it can be criticised that there would a large different between the quality of proviso. As a consequence, this split effected support, the construction of proviso and different degrees of work force ( Cohen et al. 2004 ) . Then Labours ( 1997 ) motto of ‘Education, Education, Education ‘ brought upon the foundation phase model. There will be treatments on past early old ages policies every bit good as the principle for following the foundation phase model and it affects on instruction.

Subsequently there will be a critical integrating of the policy, which may conflict with other policies. Play-based acquisition is an issue this paper wishes to analyze. A cardinal constitution of the foundation phase refers to the importance of play-based acquisition. There contrasting positions related to this portion of the policy who believe drama based acquisition to be ‘ absurd ‘ ( Hofkins, 2008 ) . There will besides be a critical treatment related to some cardinal contractions the policy nowadayss. There are inquiries raised based on some of the cardinal subjects and rules. For illustration, a cardinal purpose of the foundation phase is puting the criterions for all kids can be criticised as an issue related to the criterions docket ( Alexander, 2010 ) . The purposes to do certain all kids are doing advancement so improve attainment. There is farther treatment of other equivocal facets of the policy. There will besides be treatments related to international positions of early old ages policy compared to the foundation phase. For illustration, the Reggio Emilia attack take a socio cultural position on instruction ( Bennet, 2001 ) , which take a more child-centred attack to acquisition ( Soler and Miller, 2003 ) . Therefore, this paper aims to detect the true value and effects of the foundation phase has on all kids. However, the undermentioned subdivision will first analyze the principle for the policy.

Changing times: Early old ages

The authorities was determined to implement alterations. The socio-constructive attack to acquisition has helped authorities draws attending to understand how pupils engage within the course of study puting. Solar and Miller province: ‘this gave addition concerns with how kids interact within the scene and how kids speak and interact with other students, artifacts, and the instructor ‘ ( 2003:59 ) . The foundations for early old ages should be on understanding the rational, emotional, societal, and physical demands of kids ( Woodhead, 2000 ) . Research has shown the positive effects of ‘high quality proviso ‘ on kids ‘s development in all countries mention above ( Sammons et al. , 2002, Sylva et al. , 2004 ) and besides make fix them for formal schooling. However, local governments believed they could non use these in pattern. Hargreaves and Hopper ( 2006 ) support this claim and believe it gave a ‘low position ‘ perceptual experience of early old ages instructors ( p.1 ) . However, kids bring their experiences into their scene and the early acquisition ends account for this assortment. This implies that steps of student larning through proving will non expose the quality of experiences kids have in the early old ages. However, it can be criticised that the authorities have made premises about where the degrees begin and end for all kids. It is concurred by Miller et Al ( 2003 ) that argue the authorities assume it is clear what exact accomplishments and cognition can be learnt in the scene. Those people who do non work with kids ‘s experiences alongside the procedure of instructor have framed the counsel for early old ages. These policy shapers are more concerned about what instruction is for instead than what the experience of instruction might affect ( Miller et al. , 2003 ) . The shapers of the foundation phase have attempted to look at the holistic kids through Every Child Matters ( ECM ) ( Palaiologou, 2010 ) . However, they lack the apprehension of the importance of kids ‘s experiences due to their ain deficiency of experience in the schoolroom ( Maybin and Woodhead, 2003 ) . This suggests practicians every bit good as instruction philosophers should make the preparation of the instruction policy. Alternatively, practicians with high quality experience would be better organizing policies because they are able to understand that acquisition should be based on student experiences, background, and demands ( Solar, 2003 ) .

Harmonizing to these policy shapers attainment and accomplishing good academic results seems to be the cardinal importance of instruction. In the foundation phase, the early acquisition ends help kids to achieve a clear set of results ( DfES, 2008 ) . It is argued that the ends provide a shelters base for good accomplishment. Staggs ( 2000 ) believes these ends give kids an first-class start to future acquisition and fix the kids with the ideal ‘knowledge, accomplishments, and apprehensions ‘ ( Solar and Miller, 2003, p. 5 ) which will be needed for better employment as they grow into maturity. However, in contrast, opposing trusters view this perceptual experience as an sole environment because the early acquisition ends aim to concentrate on the importance of economic well-being instead than kids ‘s larning experience ( Kelly, 1994 ) . Anning and Edwards ( 1999 ) besides strongly knock this attack to be about the well-being of the economic system and fight. Therefore, it can be argued that it is non an inclusive course of study because it fails to admit that non all kids will be capable of employment. For illustration, some kids with terrible particular educational demand ( SEN ) will non be capable of employment ; hence, the policy fails to provide for the demands of all kids ( Staggs, 2000 ) . It maintains the impression to force the kids who are able to be successful and reach attainment marks instead than concentrate on the importance of kids as persons ( Potter, 2007 ) . To reason, this subdivision of the paper has acknowledged the cardinal purpose for the policy is to drive economic well-being. Despite the impression of the holistic kid, the purpose for the authorities is to drive these kids to accomplish the best possible results. It suggests the policy tends to belie itself because it fails to admit kids with SEN. Therefore, it is questionable to inquire is at that place a important difference in the foundation phase compared to old policies. Therefore, the undermentioned subdivision of this paper will analyze the quality of proviso to old old ages. In add-on, examine the different reading of a high quality proviso within the policy.

High quality proviso

The foundation phase underscore the importance of high quality proviso, which can better cognitive, linguistic communication and societal development ( DfES, 2008 ) . Labour ( 1997 ) felt the foundation phase would assist disfavor kids through high quality proviso. It would let giving these kids a good start in instruction and perchance extinguishing the ‘cycle of want ‘ ( Baldock et al. , 2009 ) . However, before analyzing the effects of high quality proviso the word ‘quality ‘ demands to crucially incorporate. High quality proviso related to many facets. The importance of practician ‘s degree of making and pedagogical accomplishments is the cardinal portion of high quality proviso. Sylva and Pugh ( 2005 ) strongly agree that instructors and staff that are good qualified can do the proviso more valuable for kids. Practitioners are able to understand the importance of a schoolroom puting that will provide for all kids ‘s demands, through print rich environment ( DfES, 2008 ) . However, it is questionable how Ofsted would believe high quality proviso to be outstanding. Practitioners have to follow the reading of high quality proviso harmonizing to Ofsted which is authorities based, despite holding contrasting position. Merely a few developments of intercession have shown betterments in cognitive development. Research has revealed that kids societal accomplishments ( National Audit Office, 2004 ) . It suggest that kids and improved in the quality of larning and less outlooks of kids traveling through intercession programmes. Again, it is debateable that the importance of high quality proviso to take kids from neglecting in schools and better their development for better readying for the grownup universe of economic well-being ( Sammons et al. , 2002 ) . Although research has pointed out that high quality of proviso has increased success in employment ( National Audit Office, 2004 ) . Phillips et Al. ( 2001 ) found that higher quality proviso led to kids higher degree of equal drama and higher degrees of self-awareness and competency. There is grounds to propose that there are benefits of high quality pre-school educational proviso to a scope of different results ( Sylva et al. , 2003a, 2003b ) . Melhuish ( 2004 ) states that high quality child care can bring forth benefits for cognitive, linguistic communication and societal development. Again, this paper has discovered the concluding behind high quality of proviso is once more related back to the importance of good attainment and advancement for the benefit of economic well-being. It is get downing to go clear that the purpose of the foundation phase is non concentrating on the importance of kids but to fix them for the hereafter of wining. The undermentioned subdivision will critically incorporate some mojor cardinal facets within the policy.

Play-based acquisition

This paper will research drama based acquisition and its importance in immature kids ‘s acquisition. Play performs an of import map in immature kids ‘s lives and enables them to experiment in a safe environment ( Broadhead, 2004 ) . It allows kids to research and develop their cognition, apprehension, and accomplishments. Learning through child-initiated activities is cardinal to any early old ages puting. Structured and unstructured drama Sessionss develop societal and physical accomplishments and careful mediated intercession, kids ‘s nature wonder can be enhanced and their apprehension of their universe challenged ( DfE 2008 ; Harrison and Howard, 2009 ; Siraj-Blatchford et al. , 2004 ) . Play has held a major function in early childhood development. The benefit of drama based acquisition has stimulate and involvement kids into acquisition ( Russell, 2010 ) . Symbolic actions and representations are believed to be the ways in which kids learn to do sense of their milieus and their ideas. Vygotsky states that ‘children work out practical undertakings with the aid of their address every bit good as their eyes and custodies ‘ . Claxton ( 2008 ) goes on to state that, play-based acquisition instils a desire to larn and leads to greater accomplishment throughout life. He supports this with grounds from European experiences leting for play-based larning up to age seven, beyond the age that most UK schools encourage it.

However, there have been many critics of the impression of play-based acquisition as House ( 2008 ) states that ‘to Teach kids through drama ‘ compactly sums up all that ‘s incorrect with it ‘ . This suggests that instruction is about developing kids ‘s larning through didactic attacks. Critics believe that the thought of play-based acquisition allows kids to inquire aimlessly as practicians look after them. House ( 2010 ) goes on to state that this thought of play-based acquisition is ‘absurd ‘ . It is believed to represents an inappropriate thought of a school political orientation for kids ( Hofkins 2008 ) . The BERA-SIG reappraisal ( 2003 ) besides raised a figure of troubles with drama as a manner of larning. It may propose that the foundation phase will non be taken earnestly as a portion of instruction kids but instead looking after kids until they are ready for formal acquisition. Sutton-Smith ( 1997 ) argues that drama is progressive and can assist develop kids ‘s. However besides he besides believes that it is non the lone manner of acquisition of larning. This paper acknowledges contrasting positions of drama based larning but believes that elusive undertakings and activities can assist to supply kids with rich larning experience prior to that they have been embedded decently by practicians ( Bennett et al. , 1997 ) . The undermentioned sub-section will look at some of the cardinal contradiction in the policy.

A alone kid?

The foundation phase is intended to play a cardinal function in assisting kids achieve the five results enshrined within the overarching ECM model ( DfES, 2004 ) . However, it is argued to knock with the national course of study ( Cambridge reexamine 2009 ) . As reference earlier, the foundation phase aims to look at the holistic kids. In contrast, the state course of study is based on more topics based acquisition. Therefore, the contrasting policies make it hard for practicians. Policy shapers need to take into consideration the difference in policy. Critics can oppugn the ground for contrasting policies. It can be suggested that there should be one policy for all kids in primary. This paper believes there should be one policy that practicians should follow because the foundation phase does non see those kids who may be exceeded and besides the national course of study does non grok those kids who are accomplishing believe the national outlooks. This can be hard for practician who have non received efficient sum of preparation in within that policy.

The National Union of Teachers ( NUT ) remarks on the deficiency of sufficient kid development within the EYFS papers:

The papers should take to widen and enrich practicians ‘ cognition and apprehension of this, through explicit and elaborate counsel within the papers itself and besides by signposting practicians to where more information could be found, to supply the evidence-base and the underpinning rules for the EYFS ‘s design. ( NUT, 2006, p. 7 ) .

Others have expressed concern at the continuance of an overly normative attack to what is to be offered to immature kids. The deficiency of elaborate counsel in the foundation phase makes it hard for practicians to understand what they need to make Locke et Al. ( 2002 ) particularly in linguistic communication and communicating. As most deprived kids enter the foundation phase with low degrees of linguistic communication. Therefore, the foundation phase is non able to assist practician to get the better of these barriers even thought the purpose of the policy is to assist take kids from deprived and disadvantaged backgrounds. It does non state the practician how to accomplish this. This paper believes there are some contradictions within the policy as it let the practician the purpose but fails to assist to accomplish the purpose sufficiently. It can besides be argued to be a sole course of study despite trying to be inclusive to those kids. The undermentioned subjugation will looking at the recommendation brand by Alexander ( 2010 ) in relation the foundation phase.

Alexander Review

Alexander ( 2010 ) argues the foundation phase period needs to re-considered. Presently the foundation phase is till the age of 5 old ages. However, Alexander argues that kids should remain within the foundation phase till the age of 6. An illustration of this type of policy is in Reggio Emilia schools where kids start formal schooling at the age of 6 old ages ( Miller et al. 2005 ) . Research has shown that the longer age in play-based scene has had a better impact on kids ‘s development Carr and May, 2000 ) . As the kids are able to travel off from the type of larning to formalised learning when they enter formal lessons they are able to hold on the construct much easier and better. Widening it to age six so it will give kids the best possible foundation for oracy, literacy, numeracy ( Cambridge Review, 2010 ) . Therefore, this recommendation is of import to see because there is research back uping the thought. Passage is a challenge in all schools ( Sylva and Pugh, 2005 ) . Therefore, if this recommendation is taken to consideration so it could assist to ease the force per unit area of passages and let kids to ease their manner into formal acquisition. This suggest that it will assist the kids to accomplish better once they are in that formal scene as they will be older and aware of what is expected from them. Tickell ( 2010 ) will describe the thought of widening the foundation phase for deprived biennial olds. Again, this suggests that it is all about undertaking those deprived kids in society. This manner those kids can accomplish better results for themselves and forestall them from underachievement because they are non able to acquire the support needed.

However, issues with policy and the media have besides effected the perceptual experience of widening the foundation phase. As the media are able to pull strings study to provide for their demands and so impact the ideas of spectator ‘s perceptual experience of instruction. For illustration, the Cambridge reappraisal ( 2009 ) mentions the proposal of widening the foundation phase down to age two and up to age six. However, the media have portrayed this as the authorities of desiring to maintain kids off from instruction until age six. Therefore, is it questionable that the media are seeking to demo the foundation phase as a manner of kids being looked after instead than a manner of kids larning before formal acquisition. It is problematic that the media have a negative deceptive perceptual experience of the foundation phase and proposing portraying to households that the authorities are taking kids from instruction. However, they fail to understand the contrasting position that the foundation phase will assist those deprived kids from a immature age and aid to fix all kids from the passage to formal acquisition. This paper believes that the extension the foundation phase should be considered as seen in ascertained pattern, kids have found it hard to travel from a free low manner of larning to an hr of literacy and mathematics. Therefore, an extension will let the practician aid kids to see longer formal acquisition in that extension period. The concluding subdivision of this paper will discourse some international perceptive on early old ages instruction and compare it to the foundation phase in England.

International positions

Carr ( 2000 ) argues that the early childhood course of study can be conceived of as a cultural site affecting the building of societal world, which leads to the building of communicative interactions between instructors and pupils ( Smith, 1999, p. 6 ) . This model have been based on socio-constructivist theories. The Reggio Emilia attack does non utilize a policy framewotk. Alternatively it uses a kids centred attack to larning. This context enables the Reggio Emilia attack expression at the sociocultural positions of kids instead than the importance of effectual pegeagody and force per unit areas from a stiff course of study. The kids are seen to ease their ain acquisition and who are able to larn efficaciously they manner they wish to. However, there is tenseness towards this attack as there is excessively much accent given to the socio-constructivist model of larning. As opposing theoreticians argue that kids learn in set ways and grownups need to supply kids with enabling environments instead than puting kids to larn what they feel. However, the impression of the ‘spider web ‘ in the Te Whariki course of study is the key to understanding the linking of a child-centred acquisition which underpins this course of study ( Carr and May, 2000 ) .

Early old ages pedagogues should accept the thought that larning is related to kids ‘s experience. As reference earlier kids use their experiences to develop further and retrieve what they have learnt antecedently. This implies that kids larning through proving are non able to derive and accomplish positive experience that will assist them in their acquisition. Therefore, the importance for high quality proviso and exciting and manus on environments allows kids to derive more memorable experience that they are able to take away with them to utilize in the hereafter. However, Bertram and Pascal ( 2002 ) believe there are issues in early old ages proviso in Hong Kong. They argue that there is an addition between the addition development western manner of acquisition and the traditional manner of larning. It is believed that instructors are ‘transmitters ‘ so that kids focus on a more didactiv manner of larning instead than concentrating on the child-centred attack ( Pascal, 2002 ) . In contrast, there are some schools which are get downing to take the socio constructive manner of larning to consideration in their schools. Kwon ( 2003 ) critics the early old ages proviso in Hang Kong to pattern in England. He argues that the importance of independency in early acquisition reflects the English values kids to single rights and freedom to make what they feel is appropriate to them. However, the political manner in Hang Kong differs to the political relations in England ; hence, there is bound to be tenseness between the contrasting ways of acquisition. However, despite the contrasting positions within these states, they all suggest a holistic position of acquisition.


The EPPE undertaking ( 2003 ) suggested that effectual pattern needed non merely pedagogical apprehension of early old ages larning but besides an appropriate environment of proviso. Bowman et Al ( 2000 ) argues the contractions of the policy and debating the state that the purpose of the policy towards economic factors, drama based acquisition or adult-child relationships fails to admit the importance of the function of the practician. Through the practicians, involved kids are able to derive high quality experiences. In add-on, although there are critics against the policy, it is of import to retrieve that it attempts to lend to the holistic attack of kids and non merely the topic based acquisition.

Policy, societal and economic positions are the cardinal factors that can impact the outlooks of early old ages instruction. AS this paper has realized many facets of the policy is to take to add to future economic affairs and economic loads. Most significantly the purpose of the foundation phase is to fix kids for formal school and prevent hereafter attainment failure ( Heckman & A ; Masterov, 2004 ; National Audit Office, 2004 ) . Therefore, this paper has discovered the purpose of the foundation phase is to take kids from that ‘cycle of want ‘ and assist disadvantaged kids ( Ball and Vincent, 2005, Sylva, 2000 ) . The statement is that the intent of foundation phase is to fix kids for another phase of instruction ( Moss and Petrie, 2002 ; Bertram and Pascal, 2002 ) . Therefore, this paper feels it still fails to provide for all kids as non all kids will travel off from the foundation phase. As there is such a strong perceptual experience that the foundation phase is to fix, it fails to admit kids with SEN that have nil to fix for. Children with SEN, may non be able to achievement the academic success as most kids. Therefore, it is arguable the foundation phase is sole to kids with terrible SEN and is providing for a norm society to better the economic system. It seems that the whole intent of the policy is to profit the economic system and train kids and bring forth ideal people who will suit into a society to be successful. However, with the current recession in society even the most academic and deeply successful grownups are at hazard from losing their occupations. It is hard to understand that the foundation phase will forestall economic devastation taking topographic point.