Two-year-olds in schools pilot is ‘runaway success’, says minister

Two-year-olds in schools pilot is ‘runaway success’, says minister” education minister Elizabeth Truss told the Commons Education Select Committee today. This is from the TES

Asked if she was comfortable that schools were the right environment for two-year-olds to be from breakfast to bedtime, Ms Truss said: “[The pilot] has been heavily oversubscribed by parents, there is very, very positive feedback… Parents feel it is part of the community, it is part of the educational continuum.”

And the minister added: “Of course they are not studying trigonometry at age 2 they are doing things like playing with water and counting bricks. All the things that you expect in a high-quality nursery.”

The government has given £10,000 each to 49 schools to look into ways of developing provision that is suitable for two-year-olds. The project began in September 2013 and will run until next month.

baseline survey published in April revealed that the majority of schools had filled all their places and had a waiting list. It also found that 42 schools reported staff training on dealing with two-year-olds was needed. But 92 per cent reported that an early years professional or teacher was working on a regular basis with the two-year-olds.

The government has pledged that around 40 per cent of two-year-old children, about 260,000, will be eligible for fully-funded early education places from September – twice as many as now. But there are concerns that the expansion will be at the expense of quality…

More at: Two-year-olds in schools pilot is ‘runaway success’, says minister

See also: Childcare Minister Liz Truss refuses extra funds for threatened nurseries

Your thoughts on Liz Truss’s comments and the idea of extending provision in schools to start at two? What do you see as the pros and cons of doing this as opposed to having non-school-based nursery and childcare options? Please let us know in the comments or via Twitter and take part in our poll…

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38 more free schools given go-ahead
Childcare Minister Liz Truss refuses extra funds for threatened nurseries
Categories: Pre-school and Primary.

Comments

  1. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove Isn’t Truss bound to say that? Plus the parents have saved hundreds/thousands in childcare costs so will be happy too

  2. markproskills

    cherrylkd SchoolsImprove there’ll be no point in having kids soon as only see parents for 3 hours a day before sleep

  3. Talkloads

    BilkeyT SchoolsImprove I agree-that’s how it’s feeling these days. The role of parenting is being eroded so fast it’s frightening…

  4. Janet2

    Truss claims parents feel attendance at a school’s nursery is part of the “education continuum”.  But schools can’t prioritise pupils who’ve been to a school’s nursery, the Schools Adjudicator ruled, because it discriminates against parents who are unwilling or unable to enter their children into a nursery attached to a school.

    Parents who believe children in a school nursery will automatically proceed to the school are being deceived.

  5. Janet2

    Truss exaggerates.  The scheme can’t be called a “runaway success” if roughly one-third reported challenges with Ofsted registration, sources of finance and future financial sustainability.

    And nearly a third said it was a challenge to develop the workforce in order to provide highly-qualified staff.

    The baseline study results are here:

    https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/307281/RR348_-_Two_year_olds_in_schools_baseline_survey.pdf

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