Reception baseline providers removed


Of the six baseline tests originally offered for Reception, only three are still available. It was stated at the outset that not all the tests might be offered ultimately if there were an insufficient number of schools selecting them.

The tests that continue to be available are:

  • Centre for Evaluation and Monitoring, Durham University (CEM)
  • The National Foundation for Educational research (NFER)
  • Early Excellence

The Early Excellence Baseline (EExBA) model is based on teacher assessment and observation and has been particularly popular.

GL assessment has published on their website that, although there will be no funding for 2015, they will continue to publish their materials and encourage schools to use their assessment.

Speech Link have placed a message on their website that states that they have not been selected to continue as a supplier of the assessment, and they wish those who had selected them good luck in choosing a new provider.

According to the report ‘Reception baseline research’, the factors influencing schools’ choices include:

  • Ease of administration
  • Format that includes a practical element for staff to help assess children’s independent learning
  • Content that includes personal development
  • Reliability so that the test can also provide information for planning purposes
  • Value for money

Schools have been preparing by doing their own research, and sharing and discussing their views with cluster schools. There is a likelihood that schools will tend to implement the baseline assessment earlier in the school year than they would have other unofficial baseline tests – an indication that schools may try to ‘game’ the tests and will want to use them to show as much progress as they can.

More information

 Image: Hall School Wimbledon (

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