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Early years — 1 Oct 2007
News & opinion — 24 Jul 2018
We have been delighted to work in partnership with Jersey Child Care Trust, with support from the UBS Optimus Foundation UK, to deliver an ambitious five-year project (2016 to 2021) that has facilitated capacity building in the early years sector and improved outcomes for young children and their families.
Pre-2016 statistics showed that too many children in Jersey were not reaching their full potential and Jersey’s early years services didn’t have the opportunity for sharing best practice and improvement. This was reflected in inequalities between communities including in engagement with speech and language services as well as dedicated early years services across the island.
The Jersey Early Childhood Development Programme is also informed by stakeholders including the Government of Jersey Department of Education, the Department of Health, and the Best Start Partnership.
NCB tackled the inequalities in Jersey’s early years provision in three ways:
Engaging parents in their children's early literacy development has been shown to improve children's outcomes and help to narrow the gap between disadvantaged and other children.
The diversity of experiences across all children and early years settings in Jersey means that the introduction of Making it REAL has enabled practitioners to reach out to parents and families, building confidence and knowledge to support early home learning, with a powerful impact on children’s outcomes and on family literacy practice.
All nurseries and pre-schools in Jersey have been offered the opportunity to take part in an island-wide programme which included a focus on literacy and maths.
We improved the knowledge of ‘what works’ for families through newsletters that provided local updates, profiled latest research and practice from the UK along with international contexts.
Our Knowledge Makes Change seminar series provided:
12 Seminars have been delivered on a variety of subjects including: Emotional Health and Well-being; Bilingualism; Early Maths; Closing the Word Gap; and Pedagogy & Play.
By the end of the programme we had worked with over 7,000 people directly, including over 3,000 children, and a wider audience of over 3,000 practitioners and stakeholders trained and consulted across the island.
To ensure the programme is sustainable we developed a legacy handover model for each of the three strands:
Developing an Early Years Outcomes Framework
Through a series of workshops, key stakeholders were engaged in developing strategies using an Outcomes Based Accountability model. Making it REAL (Raising Early Achievement in Literacy) Early Years Teachers and Practitioners, along with members of the Government of Jersey Early Years Advisory Team and Jersey Childcare Trust support staff have embraced a training for trainers’ model, attending training and participating in supported delivery opportunities through co-delivering alongside NCB colleagues.
NCB continue to support these new trainers to deliver Making it REAL, A REAL Approach to Early Maths and Sharing REAL with parents training by drawing up an ongoing agreement for use of NCB training resources.
Making it REAL has been embedded in the Level 3 and degree level Early Years qualifications at Highlands College.
Knowledge Makes Change
Through a mentoring and shadowing process we have supported Jersey Childcare Trust to take over ongoing publication of the Knowledge Makes Change Newsletter. The newsletter now has a subscriber reach of over 700 and an additional reach of over 1000 via social media.
In addition, the Early Childhood Development Programme Steering Group with the Best Start Partnership will ensure the continued involvement of all key stakeholders in Jersey.
The Early Childhood Development Programme has been externally evaluated by CREC (Centre for Research in Early Childhood.
Read the CREC evaluation here.
If you are interested in developing a similar programme of work in your local area, get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org