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Do we really need 117 measures per child?

RUTH Stott, head of Elmbridge infants, Gloucester, has estimated it will take a teacher 30 minutes to fill in the foundation stage profile's 117 tick boxes for each child.

It may sound quick, but it adds up to 15 hours or three school days. And with three reception classes in her 268-pupil school, giving teachers time to fill in the profile will cost her pound;1,000 in supply cover and provide no new information.

The profile booklet has a set of 13 assessment scales each of which has nine aspects, making 117 points to be considered for each child.

Some of the assessments seem unnecessary, Mrs Stott said. "Looking at the assessment scale for personal, social and emotional development, for example, we have to make a judgment on whether the child separates from the main carer with support. But we do not need to put a tick in a box to know that, we only have to watch the children as they come in each morning."

She added that other strands seemed very difficult to assess such as whether the child "has a developing respect for own culture and beliefs and those of other people".

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