PRESS RELEASE For immediate release
Childcare Is Not Child’s Play: Children Will Pay the Price for Government Reforms Professionals in the Early Years sector have responded with dismay to the Coalition Government’s recently proposed reforms to childcare. The Government’s main proposals appear to be centred on an attempt to cut the cost of childcare by reducing staff-to-child ratios for babies and two year olds, creating child-minding agencies and reducing or eliminating any local authority support, training and staff development. As experienced professionals, committed to supporting the wellbeing of children and their parents, we believe that such proposals will be detrimental to the quality of childcare provision in the UK, currently the envy of the world. Since staff-to-child ratios are a key indicator of quality care, changing the ratio to allow two graduate staff to work with six two year olds will put children and staff at risk, and more importantly will be detrimental to children’s development. By contrast, quality childcare is a key factor in one of the Deputy Prime Minister’s major aspirations - improving social mobility. Good childcare allows mothers to go to work, and enhances a child’s future development. Early Years professionals have faced criticism and had their concerns ignored, despite the vital role they play in society. In light of this, the London Early Years Foundation (LEYF) has initiated a series of celebrations on Saturday 1st June International Children’s Day - to promote the welfare of children and celebrate the contribution all Early Years staff make to children worldwide.
June O’Sullivan, LEYF CEO and popular spokesperson of the sector recently said: “Early Years staff are unwilling to remain downtrodden and ignored when we contribute significantly to supporting the national economy and to the wellbeing of children. We need to highlight these issues and make our voices heard. “To achieve this, professionals from across the sector and the UK are celebrating together on Saturday 1st June - International Children's Day making it a day of picnics and parties for parents and their children. “We are honoured to have been given the responsibility of supporting parents to rear their children, and look forward to making June 1 st a great day for rejoicing and making the day 'all about the children'. -ENDSNotes to editors: [Details about who you are] About London Early Years Foundation (LEYF) •
The London Early Years Foundation (LEYF) is the UK’s most well-known and respected childcare social enterprise, providing day care and parenting support to a diverse mix of families in 24 community, workplace and Children’s Centre nurseries across six London boroughs.
LEYF has developed a unique social business model that uses sustainable income from its nurseries in more affluent areas to actively target the heart of some of the capital’s most deprived communities; in doing so LEYF makes high quality day care available to families that have traditionally been unable to reach or afford it, and typically need it most of all.
LEYF is equally committed to helping previously disadvantaged young adults realise their own potential. Thanks to LEYF’s mentor-based Early Years apprenticeship programme, such individuals are given the chance to develop a 2/3
range of vocational and interpersonal skills, with a professional qualification and in most cases a job at the end of it. •
Constantly weaving the principles of social enterprise and staff-inspired core values into everything they do, LEYF passionately champions the long-term social impact that comes from combining a progressive research-based nursery education with the creation of such social and cultural capital.
With a clear ambition to build a better future for London’s children, LEYF is now geared to more than triple its impact over the next 2-3 years.
For more information about this press release, please visit www.leyf.org.uk or contact [Your contact details].