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EYFS 2024 Update Summary

10 Jan by Alison Fellows

Group and schools-based provision

  1. Note: paragraph references refer to the schools and group-based document

A notable change is to the qualification requirements for managers (paragraph 3.37). Managers taking up a NEW post from 4th January 2024 will need to hold a level 2 maths qualification or ensure that they achieve one within 2 years of starting in their new position. If a manager is continuing in the SAME job as they were in prior to 4th January 2024, they will NOT need to gain a level 2 maths qualification to remain in their role. The requirement only applies if they want to change jobs.


  1. Level 3 practitioners will now not be required to hold a level 2 maths qualification to count within qualified staff ratios but will still be required to hold a literacy Level 2 qualification (paragraph 3.38). That being said, some training organisations may still have their own internal requirement for someone to complete a maths qualification in order to pass their end point assessment. This is separate requirement to the DfE EYFS requirement as it is set by the assessing organisation.


  1. Students and apprentices can now count in qualified ratios at the level below their level of study providing the manager is satisfied that they are competent and responsible (paragraph 3.49). However, this must be used with caution. While this may be a welcome change for some to alleviate significant staffing challenges within the sector, we must ensure that the quality of provision for children is not compromised. A manager must ensure that they feel the individual is ‘competent and responsible’ prior to using them in the qualified ratios, potentially via an internal assessment or evaluation. Evidence does not always need to be written or on a specific form/document so the use of existing inductions, probationary periods, supervisions, peer reviews, observations or appraisals may help to assess an individual’s competency.


  1. As a reminder of existing rules around using unqualified staff in ratios (paragraphs 3.40-3.46), if someone is unqualified and not studying towards an early years qualification they can still be used in the staffing ratios for unqualified staff. Similarly, if they are not yet deemed to be ‘competent and responsible’ (for example, if they are new) they can continue be counted within the unqualified staffing numbers.


  1. DfE have clarified the requirement for those who qualified after 30th June 2016 to hold and maintain a valid paediatric first aid certificate in order to be counted in the qualified staff numbers (paragraph 3.31). Failure to hold a valid paediatric first aid certificate will mean the individual can only count in the unqualified staffing ratio until they complete the paediatric first aid course. The ‘summary of changes’ document does not specify that this applies for those qualifying after 30th June 2016, instead the summary states that this is for all practitioners. The mismatch in information has naturally caused some confusion within the sector. The statement of ‘all practitioners’ is understood to be an error in the summary document and the EYFS requirements relating to those qualifying after 30th June 2016 must be followed until such times as any amendments are issued.  


  1. The DfE have made it clear that those operating under a Childcare on Domestic Premises (CoDP) registration must follow the group-based EYFS requirements (page 5, “who is this framework for?”).



  1. Note: paragraph references refer to the childminding document

For childminders, the DfE have listened to sector feedback to create a separate framework tailored to the specific requirements of the childminding workforce. Many of the core requirements remain the same however some modifications have been made to take into account the uniqueness of childminding.


  1. Assistants can now be used as a key persons for children providing that the childminder deems them suitable to do so (paragraph 3.38). All other requirements relating to assistants remain unchanged, including ensuring assistants follow all policies and procedures in place at the provision.


  1. The changes have also further reinforced that childminders are not required to keep written records of children’s learning and development unless they wish to do so (paragraph 2.4). Throughout the EYFS there has been added clarity over when a record must be put in writing and when it is optional for the childminder to decide if this is needed or not.


  1. Other changes also consider the need for displaying documentation around the child-minding home. The revised EYFS details that Ofsted registration certificates (paragraph 3.85) and Paediatric First Aid certificates (Paragraph 3.36) do not necessarily need to be on display for parents at all times. They must continue to be made available to parents upon request, could be displayed digitally, and parents must be informed that they can request sight of these.


Other changes for childminders have been made, please see the summary of updates page of the website for full information.


Early years qualification requirements and standards

A new document has been produced to support Early years qualification requirements and standards.


This document sets out the minimum qualification requirements that staff must meet to be recognised as level 2, level 3 or level 6 members of staff for working within the EYFS ratios. Providers must refer to these requirements to determine at which level a member of staff can be included in the ratios. It may be helpful to refer to this document when considering the ‘competent and responsible’ requirements for unqualified staff as stated within the EYFS changes.