Playwork in Practice
New Protocol between Ofsted and Local Authorities
(for providing information, advice and training), March 2004
Ofsted has published a series of 'protocols', describing the arrangements
between it and other bodies involved in organisation of Early Years.
The new protocol between Ofsted and local authorities makes clear
the distinctive roles they have and the Local Authority's responsibility
for support, advice, information and training. There seems still
to be a lot of confusion about this, but section 2.2.3 of the protocol
specifies that Local Authorities are expected to:
- provide training for providers and pre-registration briefings
and disseminate information on the registration process, national
standards, and other requirements
- send Ofsted a schedule of dates for forthcoming pre-registration
The full text is available at: http://www.ofsted.gov.uk/publications/index.cfm?
- Discovering Discover, the
new play centre in Stratford, November 2003.
- Making space for play in the
countryside, how can we develop play opportunities in rural
areas, Chris Snell finds out at the Spinney in Lincolnshire, November
- Play on the Range, a new
service in Cambridge is reaching children in their neighbourhoods.
Chris Snell finds out how the City Council adapted to provide
a more flexible play service, September 2003.
- Playing out on the Street,
last summer Leeds Play Network piloted a bold new initiative,
- No Policy but Plenty of Pizza,
Bedford has a range of fixed equipment playgrounds and skate parks
that other local authorities would die for. But, insists Steve
Tomlin from the Borough Council, that is not because they have
a huge capital budget, June 2003.
Consulting with Young Children, DfES research,
The Department for Education and Skills has published research
by Alison Clark, Susan McQuail and Peter Moss of the Thomas Coram
Research Unit, on Exploring the Field of Listening to and Consulting
with Young Children. The Briefing was published in June 2003, as
issue briefing RR445 and is available on the DfES
website, by searching for RR445.
Problems with Ofsted?
Sandra Melville, PLAYLINK Director, is a member of the newly reconstituted
National Consultative Forum. This is the group which advises Ofsted
on how the regulatory system for under 8s daycare is working and
the impact it is having on providers. Her remit is particularly
to represent the position of play service providers with a focus
on open access provision. The Ofsted response to points she raised
at the last NCF meeting will shortly be posted on this site.
Please let her know of any problems you have encountered with registration
or inspection. These could either be dealt with as individual cases
to be resolved by the Early Years Directorate at Ofsted or raised
as a general question at the next NCF meeting in January 2004. Contact
Developing Accessible Play Space
The Government has produced a good practice guide on developing
accessible play spaces. The guide is available free from the Office
of the Deputy Prime Minister. It aims to help tackle the unfairness
that currently exists by helping play space providers understand
the issues that disabled children and their families face when using
play spaces. It also contains good practice examples of how to improve
existing space as well as issues to consider when creating new ones.
Open for Play
Open for Play is a PLAYLINK publication designed to help both playproviders
and Ofsted inspectors exploit the opportunities offered by the National
Daycare Standards to support the development of play provision in
line with the recognised values of play and playwork.
Promoting Positive Outcomes
A report on the impact of OFSTED registration on play and open
access provision written using evidence from the PLAYLINK Open Access
Registration Support Project funded by The Sure Start Unit, Department
for Education & Skills and The Department for Work & Pensions. Written
for, and in conjunction with, PLAYLINK by Bernard Spiegal, May 2003.
Best Value Performance Indicator for Play
The Best Value Performance Indicator for Play
was drafted by PLAYLINK, Inspire and the Children's Play Council
in conjunction with the Audit Commission. It is intended to help
make sure that Play does not loose out in local authority policy
is a new website aimed at putting Voluntary and community groups
in touch with professionals who can provide help for free. It is
backed by NCVO and has already helped a number of play organisations.
For further information about how professionals4free could help
your play project please see http://www.professionals4free.org.uk/case_study_list.php.
The Glowing reports website gives information and tips for Charities
producing annual reports. Further information is available at: http://www.glowingreports.org.uk/.
Making Sense: playwork in practice
Making Sense is designed to help playground staff and management
to develop skills and knowledge in order to sustain a high quality
play service. It describes a series of everyday play experienes
that have occurred in staffed play settings.
Best Play: what play provision should do for
Best Play is the result of a partnership between the National Playing
Fields Association, PLAYLINK and the Children's Play Council. It
is about how children benefit from play opportunities and how play
services and spaces can provide these benefits. You can view Best