NASUWT: Early years curriculum – ‘slimming down is simply dumbing down’

Commenting on Government plans for a slimmed down early years curriculum, in response to the Tickell Review of the Early Years Foundation Stage, Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, the largest teachers union, said:

“These plans are a predictable part of this Government’s obsession with ‘slimming down’ as if this is a catch-all solution.

“In this case, given the Coalition Government’s previous form, there is a real risk that slimming down will simply mean ‘dumbing down’.

“The Early Years Foundation Stage acts as an important quality threshold, ensuring that staff who work with very young children are fully and properly qualified. Slimming down these requirements will make it easier for private providers to drive down costs by dispensing with the need to observe existing quality standards.

“Children make the best progress in early years settings that have highly qualified and trained staff, particularly settings that have an appropriate proportion of qualified teachers.

“All of the evidence confirms that qualified teachers and high investment in early years education are essential. Unfortunately, the Coalition Government’s reforms, combined with cuts to education funding, could seriously damage the education of young children and undermine their future life chances.”


Stuart Gannon
NASUWT Press Office

Tel: 020 7420 9681
Mobile (and out of hours contact): 07966 198894
Address: 5 King Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2E 8SD