Early Excellence

Toggle menu

Choosing EExBA FAQs

1. Is EExBA based on sound early years principles?

Yes. EExBA does not involve any tests or pre-set tasks. It is fully in line with good assessment practice using observations and interactions within everyday experiences.

View answer
2. Does EExBA link directly to the EYFS?

Yes. The EExBA assessment statements are drawn from the current EYFS and Development Matters/Early Years Outcomes. They link directly to the statutory Early Learning Goals at the end of the EYFS. In terms of usability the assessment is designed to be formative in nature so that the information provides a baseline which directly informs and supports planning and next steps in learning. There will be no need for practitioners to carry out a separate formative on entry assessment as well as the official baseline - EExBA does both.

View answer
3. Will EExBA provide every child with a positive experience?

Yes. Children will not know that an assessment is taking place. The focus is on settling children in, getting to know them through observations and interactions of self-initiated play, small group activities and adult directed tasks. All children will have a positive experience based on the good practice taking place in the classroom.

View answer
4. Will administering EExBA remove children from my classroom?

No. Children remain in the classroom as part of their usual routines. The assessment judgements are made through observations and interactions of everyday activities.

View answer
5. Will administering EExBA remove an adult from my classroom?

No. All practitioners will remain in the classroom focused on settling children in and observing and interacting as part of everyday routines and experiences.

View answer
6. Does EExBA assess the whole child?

Yes. EExBA assesses each child's level of development as prescribed by the DfE (C&L, Literacy and Maths). In addition, EExBA assesses and scores more significant learning - the Prime Areas of PSED and Physical Development and whether or not children demonstrate the Characteristics of Effective Learning – all critical indicators of future outcomes.

View answer
7. Will EExBA take long to complete?

No. To complete the EExBA practitioners use their professional knowledge, acquired through ongoing observations and interactions with children as part of everyday YR practice. Practitioners do not need to produce any written observations for EExBA, therefore EExBA does not take any additional time as it is part of YR formative assessment processes. The EExBA Recording Format typically takes between 9-12mins per child. This is not done during class time. For a class of 30 this takes between 4.5 – 6 hrs.

View answer
8. Does EExBA draw on evidence from parents and previous settings?

Yes. The reception teacher will draw on their knowledge of each child and be able to refer to records from previous settings, information from parents that can be validated. They are also able to speak with practitioners who already know the children – for example the nursery teacher in the school. This is good assessment practice which contributes to an outstanding judgement at Ofsted.

View answer
9. Does EExBA produce the hard data schools need for their accountability?

Yes. EExBA assessment criteria is scored. This score produces the hard data. By inputting the 'Yes/No' answers into the pre-set electronic format, schools produce a score for each child of between 0-56. This data is sent electronically to Early Excellence who will analyse the data to produce a national picture. The pilot of EExBA in September 2014 produced a clear picture of 'typical', above and below typical.

View answer
10. Does EExBA give me an accurate baseline?

Yes. EExBA has been statistically proved to provide accurate and unbiased data. EExBA was piloted in September 2014 with over 1000 children involved. The baseline data demonstrated that practitioner 'Yes/No' judgments were accurate and consistent. The pilot clearly demonstrated that EExBA does not produce a negative bias for gender or EAL.

View answer
11. Will EExBA give me the lowest score?

N/A. The DfE will undertake a comparability study in autumn 2015 to ensure that all of the accredited baseline models are comparable and consistent with each other. This will mean that no single baseline will give a higher or lower score.

View answer
12. Will EExBA help to track and demonstrate progress?

Yes. EExBA provides data that describes the child's level of development on entry to YR in the CoEL, all three Prime Areas, Literacy and Maths. This gives a broad baseline of a child from which to demonstrate progress. As EExBA is linked directly to the EYFS it can be used within existing systems to track development to the end of EYFS using the ELGS and then to outcomes at KS1.

View answer
13. Will EExBA link to formative online assessment tools?

Yes. We are working with the major national providers of online formative assessment tools to ensure that EEXBA data can be accommodated within these existing systems.

View answer
14. Will EExBA support a nursery baseline?

Yes. The process using observations and interactions can be used on entry to nursery. Early Excellence are therefore developing EExBA-N and a tracking system from 2yrs to the end of EYFS. Training on this will be available in summer 2015 in order to provide schools with nursery classes a complete assessment and tracking system through to the end of EYFS.

View answer
15. Will EExBA generate a report for parents?

No. EExBA does not need to produce a report. In line with good practice, the YR teacher will use the EExBA data to inform their on-going records, learning journals and discussions with parents.

View answer
16. How can I share EExBA data with my LA?

If schools wish to share their baseline data with their LA, then this should be passed on to the LA directly, not by their Baseline Assessment provider. In EExBA an export file can be created within the Reports section.

View answer
17. Is EExBA recorded electronically?

Yes. The assessments will be recorded directly onto the EExBA online assessment system.

View answer
18. Can the data be input into an online assessment tool and be extracted for Early Excellence?

Yes. See answer to Q13 above.

View answer
19. Will Early Excellence report nationally on the data?

Yes. Early Excellence are required to submit the data to the DfE and, where permission is given, to the appropriate LA. Early Excellence will then produce a national 'overview' of the data.

View answer
20. Can the data be analysed into groups?

Yes. After populating the pre-set spreadsheet with the data this can be analysed in any way.

View answer
21. What support and training will schools who choose EExBA receive?

The EYFS Co-ordinator or lead Reception Teacher (one per school) will receive a full day of locally-based free training. This will support a full understanding of how EExBA works. The Early Excellence Website will provide on-going interactive support through updated FAQs and video exemplification. There will also be a telephone EExBA Helpline and opportunities through an EExBA Online Forum to discuss judgements.

View answer
22. How will EExBA be monitored and the judgements moderated?

The assessment criteria is clear and requires a 'Yes/No' answer. Through the mandatory training and by using the exemplification materials, practitioners will be clear on what constitutes a 'Yes/No' answer. As required by the DfE, all of the accredited providers must monitor the assessments. Early Excellence will undertake 'light touch' national moderation to monitor the accuracy and consistency the EExBA criteria.

View answer
23. Can EExBA be used in special schools?

Special Schools must select and use one of the DfE approved baselines. Special Schools who choose to use EExBA will attend EExBA training and make assessments using the EExBA statements. Many children with special needs will score 0. To support Special Schools using EExBA, we are developing additional materials which we will pilot in the autumn term to be available early 2016.

View answer
24. Can EExBA be used on entry to nursery?

Schools with nursery classes can choose to use EEXBA-N – the Early Excellence baseline assessment for use on entry to nursery. This follows the same principles and practices as EExBA-R (reception baseline) with the same number and range of assessment statements. If you have signed-up for EExBA-R, you will be directed 'eexba.com' our online Booking and Assessment System. Here you will be able to choose to use EExBA-N.

View answer
25. How are nursery children assessed across the year based on a staggered intake?

Schools can assess children using EExBA-N in the academic year of their 4th birthday. If you have a staggered intake of pupils who have their 4th birthday within the academic year, you will assess them within the first 6 weeks of them joining your nursery.

View answer
26. How do I enter nursery pupil numbers into eexba.com based on a staggered intake?

You will enter the total number of nursery pupils you expect to join your nursery across the full academic year. An invoice for this total will be issued upfront. Reconciliation will be made at the end of the academic year once all children have been assessed. An additional invoice or refund will automatically be generated.

View answer