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Development Matters - Non-statutory curriculum guidance for the early years foundation stage

The Department for Education (DfE) has published Development Matters, new non-statutory curriculum guidance which supports the delivery of the revised early years foundation stage (EYFS) statutory framework.

The guidance sets out pathways of children’s development in broad ages and stages but recognises the actual learning of young children is not so neat and orderly. The document encourages early year’s practitioners to use their knowledge to facilitate holistic learning and development and help children make progress without generating unnecessary paperwork. 

This is in line with the main aims of the reforms to the EYFS - to improve outcomes for all children, especially disadvantaged children, and to reduce teacher and practitioner workload.

Who is the guidance for?
The guidance has been written for all early years practitioners, for childminders and staff in nurseries, nursery schools, pre-schools, and nursery and reception classes in school. 

When should the guidance be used?
The guidance can be used by schools participating in the EYFS reforms early adopter year to support changing their curriculum and practice as they deliver the new framework this year. Those who are not early adopters may find some elements of the new Development Matters useful in 2020/21 but they will still need to follow the existing EYFS framework until statutory roll out of the reforms in September 2021.

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