Early Years Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA)

School readiness

The Joint Strategic Needs Assessment identifies key issues affecting the health and wellbeing of our residents, both now and in the future.

Are children ready to start school in Rochdale borough?

We measure school readiness at the end of the reception year but the framework changed in 2021/22, so we cannot compare to the results of previous years.

In the borough of Rochdale, the percentage of children reaching a ‘Good level of development’ in the 2021/22 academic year was 59.6%. This is below the national average of 65.2%.

We want children in the borough to start school healthy and ready to learn.

What is school readiness?

In the borough, we believe school ready children are curious, confident and cooperative. We consider a child ready to start primary school if they:

  • Are confident in approaching and communicating with others.
  • Are excited and enthusiastic about learning.
  • Are resilient, ready to take on new things and solve problems.
  • Feel safe, secure, cared for, listened to, valued and respected.
  • Have a broad range of knowledge and skills are able to make choices.
  • Are active, healthy and can independently use self-care skills.
  • Have started to develop an awareness of their own emotions and behaviours.
  • Have started to develop their turn taking and co-operation with others.

Why is school readiness important?

A child who is ready for school is more likely to meet their full potential, throughout their schooling and in life beyond the school gates.

Too many children, especially those from poorer backgrounds, lack key skills of communication, language, literacy and mathematics when they start school. Gaps in achievement between the poorest and better-off children are often established by the age of 5.

Statistics on school readiness

Guidance on school readiness