Early years proposals - consultation starts
The Council is consulting on proposals for our early years services to provide a greater focus on children’s crucial first 1001 days of life (birth to two years old).
A report to the Cabinet outlined our proposed new approach, which would aim to narrow the gap of achievement and wellbeing between disadvantaged children and others in the borough. The consultation started on 2 January and closes on 12 February.
The changes would also aim to address the high level of vacancies in Council-run nurseries and school nurseries - making better use of capacity in local primary schools and helping those schools to recruit more nursery pupils.
Camden has a proud history of supporting families of children aged under five through our Camden Sure Start services - and we know how important it is for their future to give children the best start in life. Due to changes in Government funding arrangements and a drop in the birth-rate, we now have too many nursery places in Camden. This means we have to make some challenging choices about how we deliver early years services.
While Camden children are achieving in line with others across the country by age five, there is still a significant gap between the achievement of disadvantaged children and others in the borough. This gap needs to be narrowed if Camden is to deliver on our commitment to be ‘a place where everyone has a chance to succeed and where nobody gets left behind’.
Attending a high quality nursery helps children achieve well but we also know that the time from pregnancy to the age of two is really important in ensuring that children get the best start. We are proposing some changes to early years services in the borough, which we think will help all children to achieve well.
Councillor Angela Mason CBE, Cabinet Member for Best Start for Children and Families