Priority 1: Early Years

Our aim is to increase the number of children achieving a good level of development in the early years.

Our target:

By 2021 we will increase the number of all Derby’s children achieving a good level of development at the end of the Early Years Foundation Stage to exceed the national average.

Why this is a priority?

2016 results told us that, although achievement of a good level of development (GLD) among children receiving free school meals (FSM) was marginally above the national average, the number of children overall in Derby achieving a GLD was below national average.

The gap in attainment between FSM children and their more advantaged peers in Derby was evident, with some wards achieving almost half that achieved in others.

In 2017, Derby remained below the national average, and the Partnership Board felt strongly that further raising achievement for children at this early stage would be the foundation for future success.

A high proportion of Derby’s pupils have identified speech, language and communication needs (SLCN). The Clarity Report (2015) highlighted significant problems in speech and language development in Derby’s most deprived wards, and found that many children across the city are not accessing SLCN support in the early years.

Improving the quality of early years provision in Derby, especially in the most deprived wards will help to ensure more children attain a good level of development and arrive at school ready to learn.

What are we doing?

We have worked with a number of stakeholders, including Derby’s Primary Strategy Group (PSG) and Derby Early Years Teaching School (DEYTS) to extend and deepen evidence based approaches to support children, particularly those who are disadvantaged, in attaining a good level of development, and to encourage Derby’s early years providers to take up proven development opportunities to raise the quality of provision across the city.

Click to find out more information about the programmes Derby OA are funding.