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Ofsted accused of favouring 'narrow tests and assessments' over quality early years education

Richard Howard, News Editor (03-Apr-14)

Controversy surrounding the benefits of formal testing during the early years period is likely to continue for some time following the publication of a major Ofsted report today. The regulator’s Early Years… read full article

Ofsted chief tells inspectors to check nursery children are 'school-ready'

Sue Learner, News Editor (24-Mar-14)

Ofsted’s chief inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw, is placing a heavy emphasis on teaching and learning in nurseries and has called on early years inspectors to focus on “evaluating whether children are being adequately prepared for the… read full article

Forty per cent of babies and toddlers missing out on crucial bond with parents

Julia Corbett, News Editor (20-Mar-14)

Forty per cent of babies and toddlers in the UK do not have a strong attachment to their parents and have a greater risk of developing both educational and social problems later on in life, a report by Sutton Trust has revealed. Children… read full article

'Our childcare system isn't fit for purpose' warns the Family and Childcare Trust

Richard Howard, News Editor (04-Mar-14)

Leading voices from around the childcare sector have issued responses to new research from the Family and Childcare Trust, which has shown the price of part-time childcare for a family of two children to have overtaken the price of… read full article

Government criticised for ignoring functional skills route to Early Years Educator qualification

Sue Learner, News Editor (26-Feb-14)

Early years organisations have criticised the Government for refusing to accept the functional skills route as a valid pathway to the Early Years Educator qualification. The National College for Teaching… read full article

IPPR calls for universal affordable childcare

Julia Corbett, News Editor (21-Feb-14)

The Institute for Public Policy Research has suggested the UK should be working towards a system which sees childcare account for just 10 per cent of a family’s income. In its report on maternal employment in the UK, the national… read full article

Schools urged to take toddlers to ease childcare crisis

Sue Learner, News Editor (04-Feb-14)

From this September, schools will no longer have to register with Ofsted to take two-year-olds. The Government is introducing the legislation to make it easier for school nurseries to take very young children. It… read full article

Childcare and Early Years survey finds low-income families failing to meet costs

Richard Howard, News Editor (31-Jan-14)

Leading childcare organisations have responded to a Department of Education survey by calling upon the Government to give more financial help to parents during the early years of a child’s life. The Department’s… read full article

Academics urge Government to delay free childcare scheme

Sue Learner, News Editor (22-Jan-14)

Leading early years experts from Oxford University are calling on the Government to delay expanding free nursery provision for disadvantaged two-year-olds over fears early years staff are not qualified enough. In… read full article

Purpose of children’s centres questioned in Education Select Committee report

Julia Corbett, News Editor (17-Dec-13)

The Government needs to clarify what the core purpose of Sure Start children’s centres is, a group of MPs warned in an Education Select Committee report. MPs behind the report want the Government to focus on the role of Sure… read full article

Think tank calls on Government to offer universal state-funded childcare through children's centres

Sue Learner, News Editor (12-Dec-13)

The Government needs to offer universal childcare through ‘community institutions such as children’s centres that bring children and parents together’, according to a report by IPPR. The interim report of… read full article survey finds majority of people disagree with iPads in nurseries

Sue Learner, News Editor (03-Dec-13)

Three-quarters of people disagree with the “technological creep” into nurseries where iPads and other digital devices are becoming the norm, according to a new survey. The poll conducted by,… read full article

Labour leader reveals huge drop in number of childcare places

Julia Corbett, News Editor (18-Nov-13)

At a visit to a nursery, Ed Miliband said there has been a 35,000 drop in childcare places since the Coalition Government came to power. The leader of the Labour party also published figures showing the cost of nursery places… read full article

Education watchdog Ofsted gets tough on nurseries with new inspection regime

Sue Learner, News Editor (06-Nov-13)

Education watchdog Ofsted has introduced tough new inspection rules, which means nurseries found to be ‘inadequate’ will be re-inspected after six months and if they have not improved they will face closure. Under… read full article

Department for Education criticised for ‘biased’ survey on childcare ratios

Julia Corbett, News Editor (29-Oct-13)

A survey asking parents for their views on childcare ratios and qualifications in nursery settings has been criticised by the Pre-School Learning Alliance for being biased and unscientific. The Department… read full article

Study claims children in nurseries 'more likely' to be hyperactive

Sue Learner, News Editor (17-Oct-13)

The Government needs to focus more on supporting families, say academics after finding children who spend more time in nurseries are more likely to have behavioural problems, particularly hyperactivity. Nearly… read full article

Parents and nursery staff worried educational attainment is dominating the early years

Sue Learner, News Editor (30-Sep-13)

Parents and childcare practitioners would like to see more of an emphasis from the Government on developing children’s emotional and social skills, and a move away from its increased focus on educational attainment. A… read full article

Labour pledges to help working families with 10 extra hours of free childcare provision

Julia Corbett, News Editor (23-Sep-13)

If Labour wins the next General Election, free childcare for children aged three and four will be increased from 15 hours a week to 25 hours for working families. Families eligible for the extra ten hours… read full article

Think tank claims Ofsted inspectors need better training for nursery inspections

Sue Learner, News Editor (14-Aug-13)

Ofsted inspectors need better training as they are failing to properly judge the quality of care given by nurseries and pre-schools, according to the think tank IPPR. The report published by IPPR (Institute… read full article

Minister calls for nurseries to review policies after investigation

Sue Learner, News Editor (13-Aug-13)

The children’s health minister has called on nurseries to review their policies on kissing and cuddling children in their care, after an investigation by found some have introduced ‘no-contact’ policies to protect… read full article