New report highlights gaps in investment for children who need additional support

A new report launched by NAHT and the Family and Childcare Trust has highlighted that children are less ready for school than five years ago.

Purnima Tanuku OBE, Chief Executive of National Day Nurseries Association, said: “We welcome this report which highlights the gaps in investment for children who need additional support.

“Children who attend high quality early years education develop good social and communication skills.

“There is a need for schools to work closely with early years settings when children are making the transition into school. This helps teachers to understand a child’s starting point and where development is needed.

“Early years practitioners are also best placed to identify those children at an early age who need extra support to give them the best start. Unfortunately there is often a delay in acquiring this additional support which means that many children are not helped until they start school. By this time, the gap in development is much harder to bridge.

“The Early Years Pupil Premium, which helps disadvantaged children, is also too low in early years, which is exactly the time of a child’s life when this early investment could make the most difference. If this amount was equal to levels given to children in schools, it would help to fully support these children prior to starting school.

“NDNA is raising literacy and communications skills within nurseries with its Literacy Champions and SEND Champions programme. A key practitioner is given the skills and support to put measures in place to embed literacy and good communication skills within their setting and pass on best practice to their colleagues.”