In Technical Paper 10, data from 12 effective pre-school centres, reflecting good child outcomes, (cognitive and/or social behavioural) have been analysed to reveal a unique 'story' for each centre. The associated Researching Effective Pedagogy in the Early Years (REPEY, Siraj-Blatchford et al DfES Research Report 356) project enabled the addition of two reception classes to the 12 EPPE cases (i.e. 14 case study centres in total), and this additional data is included in Technical Paper 10. The aim of the intensive case study analyses has been to tease out the specific pedagogical and other practices that are associated with achieving 'excellent' outcomes compared to those centres with 'good' or more 'average' outcomes. The EPPE definition of 'effectiveness' is based on child outcomes, which was understood as a necessary but insufficient component of quality on its own. High quality provision is related to child outcomes but also to the quality of child care and pedagogical practices that is offered as well. The report shows how the actual practices in the settings vary in important ways.
The findings show that good outcomes for children are linked to early years settings that: Provide a strong educational focus with trained teachers working alongside and supporting less qualified staff. Provide children with a mixture of practitioner initiated group work and learning through freely chosen play. Provide adult-child interactions that involve 'sustained shared thinking' and open-ended questioning to extend children's thinking. Have practitioners with good curriculum knowledge combined with knowledge and understanding of how young children learn. Have strong parental involvement, especially in terms of shared educational aims with parents. Provide formative feedback to children during activities and provide regular reporting and discussion with parents about their child's progress. Ensure behaviour policies in which staff support children in rationalising and talking through their conflicts. Provide differentiated learning opportunities that meet the needs of particular individuals and groups of children e.g. bilingual, special needs, girls/boys etc.