Children's Commissioner for England, Anne Longfield, OBE, has today published her report, Best Beginnings, which looks at the provision of early years services across the country.
The report calls on the government to make public services work for the people who need them, in this case young children. The paper suggests ways do this, ranging from cooperation at a local level to national level policy change.
Liz Bayram, PACEY's Chief Executive, welcomed the report this morning, commenting, “PACEY wholeheartedly supports the Children’s Commissioners Best Beginnings report published today. She has joined hundreds of individuals and organisations in calling for a long-term and increased investment in childcare and early years. We believe childminders, nurseries and pre-schools should be considered core infrastructure services for families, supporting all children to get the best start in life and helping to close the gap for our most disadvantaged children. Furthermore, our economic recovery is unlikely to succeed without childcare support for working parents.
"Covid-19 has exposed how years of underfunding of government’s early education entitlements as well as disjointed policy-making has left the sector in disarray. We are now faced with the vast majority of nurseries, pre-schools and childminders expecting to operate at a loss over the next six months, with one in four anticipating closure within the year. Many of these vital services are in areas of disadvantage, in communities that are most in need of early support."
Read Best Beginnings.