Greenacres Primary Academy

Respect, Responsibility and Really Good Manners

Effectiveness of our Early Years provision.


How have we improved our Early Years?

During our most recent Ofsted (June/July 2022), the inspectors praised the Early Years Foundation Stage and judged it as 'Good'.

What did Ofsted say in 2022?

  • "Pupils and children in the early years, behave well in lessons and around school."
  • "Children get off to a good start with learning to read from the moment they begin school. They enjoy songs, rhymes and stories in the Nursery class."
  • "The phonics programme is well established and staff teach it with confidence."
  • "In the Reception class, children quickly get to know letters and sounds and how to blend them together to make words."
  • "Pupils and children in the early years, relish their leadership responsibilities."
  • "Leaders, staff and governors are well trained and knowledgeable about keeping pupils and children in the early years safe." 


At the previous Ofsted inspection in 2017, our feedback highlighted what the then-new leadership already knew about the Early Years Foundation Stage at Greenacres. Since then, we have gone through a dramatic transformation! 


What did Ofsted say in 2017?

  • The quality of provision in the early years is not giving children a good start to their education.
  • The proportion of children achieving a good level of development at the end of the Reception is below the national average.
  • Teaching in Reception is not consistently strong enough to narrow the gaps in children’s learning and help them be fully ready for the curriculum in Year 1.
  • Over time, leadership in the early years has not been effective. For example, in the Reception class staff do not always work well as a team.
  • The quality of activities to develop children’s writing skills are not always meaningful and interesting enough in Nursery and Reception to help children become confident, skilled writers.
  • Expectations of children are not always high enough.
  • The curriculum for children at the school is adequate.
  • Resources, furniture and displays of children’s learning are variable in quality and not always used well for teaching.

What did the Leadership team also know?

  • EYs staff had been inconsistent
  • Resources were old and not accessible for children
  • Environment wasn’t engaging
  • Displays weren’t effective
  • Teaching was inconsistent
  • Lack of parental engagement
  • Poor attendance
  • Outdoor had indoor resources and lacked engagement


What did we do?

  • KS1 lead moved to EYs lead
  • Created an EYs philosophy as a team – review yearly – what do we want for our children/staff?
  • Weekly planning meeting – all staff, plan for outdoor that we share and discuss key children.
  • Introduce tapestry. Improve assessment, parent access, all staff can use it.
  • Moderate baseline & use of tapestry.
  • Reviewed our topic overviews – book & question focus.
  • Buy new furniture/resources to create an engaging environment – now moving to natural open ended resources.
  • Review outdoor – each member of staff has an area to develop/maintain. Outdoor budget.
  • EYs lead to oversee PMT for EYs TAs
  • All staff visit outstanding settings.
  • EYs lead to attend EYs meeting and liaise with EYs staff in the trust.
  • Training – RWI, ABC, Maths, EAL, Elklan, WellComm, SALT, moderation
  • Termly assessment update & GAP analysis used to develop classroom provision.
  • Introduce skill development provision planning – indoor & outdoor
  • Learning journey displays – natural
  • Develop children’s interests
  • Learning journey topic display – natural
  • EYs staff meeting
  • Half termly parent workshops
  • Stay and play sessions
  • Parents questionnaires & speech bubbles
  • Weekly newsletter to keep parents informed
  • Outdoor risk assessment is in place
  • Improve adult intervention during CP – skill planning, questioning, modelling,
  • Increase level of challenge in reception – ‘rainbow’
  • Improve transition into Y1 - Power maths, CPLE, RWI TG/KO work with SC
  • Trips & experiences – floor book
  • Interventions are in place and reassessed regularly.
  • Improve communication with parents further though embedding the use of the ‘Remind’ app
  • Refurbish our outdoor area to make it look more inviting
  • Introduce ‘star challenge’ into EY where the children complete given activities through continuous provision
  • Introduce Jane Considine symbols in Nursery and Reception throughout the provision.
  • Follow Jane Considine for literacy (Reception).
  • Self-regulation is being embedded throughout early years.
  • Colour Monster display added and used in reception and nursery
  • Vocabulary added to the outdoor area for staff to scaffold. 
  • Kagan structures introduced into EYFS (nursery RR and TPS) Reception (RR, TPS, MPS, QQT, RT, STT)
  • Smooth transition of a new EYFS lead.

How can we improve further?

  • Develop links with local playgroups and children’s centres
  • BLANK questions added to the areas inside and out.
  • P4C implemented into EYFS. 
  • Support for new reception class teacher (2022-2023).
  • Curriculum in place for rising 3’s.
  • Continue to embed self regulation and metacognition.
  • Continue to support SEND pupils to give them the best start.

What do our parents think?

Spring 2021