School readiness in Tower Hamlets

What is school readiness?

School Readiness in TH cover image

In Tower Hamlets we believe that school readiness involves: Children’s readiness for school

Schools’ readiness for children

  • Families and communities’ readiness for school.

There are four key areas that make an important difference to how children get on in school:

  • language and communication
  • personal, social and emotional development
  • physical development
  • characteristics of effective learning.

These areas form the foundation for learning including literacy and numeracy.

The rapid rate of development from birth to five means that we must take into account the different needs of children at different ages when we are thinking about being ready for wider learning experiences including school.

Who supports school readiness?

  • Parents at home when they read stories with their child, sing songs and talk about things that interest them and their child, and play with their child.
  •  Health professionals working with parents and children to ensure that everyone gets the best start in life.
  • Children and Family Centres, where many health professionals are now based, and where there are stay and play sessions and family support).
  • Early years settings –including child minders, nurseries, play groups or schools.

The most important thing we do in early years is to ensure that children are learning through play. Research tells us that this is the most effective way of supporting children’s development. The process of development is sometimes portrayed as one in which children gradually manage things more independently, with lots of support and modelling from the adults who care for them.

Two Year Old Integrated Review

A very important part of ensuring that children will thrive and flourish is discussing a child’s achievements around the age of two with parents and families. This is called the Two Year Old Integrated Review and is an opportunity if further support and help is needed if there are concerns about a child’s progress. Early intervention has a significant impact on the outcomes for children and is the start of the process that leads towards school readiness.

Assess school readiness

At the end of the reception year, teachers assess whether children have reached the early learning goals. If they reach the goals for:

  • personal, social and emotional development,
  • communication and language,
  • physical development,
  • literacy and
  • mathematics, then they are at a good level of development and are ready for year one.

School readiness guide for parents and professionals

The Integrated Early Years Service has produced a guide for parents and professionals. This document aims to give greater detail on School readiness in Tower Hamlets.