Kindred Email Digest

September 12th, 2023

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Children and Young People Now - Childcare reform 'key to general election votes'

Nearly half of UK voters believe that childcare and early education reform will be key in deciding who to vote for at the next general election, a report from the Early Education and Childcare Coalition has found.

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The Early Years Educator - Most parents do not support increasing ratios in nurseries, survey finds

Research by Pregnant Then Screwed reveals ‘huge opposition’ to the Government’s plans to increase ratios in nurseries for two-year-olds. The charity surveyed more than 5,000 parents with at least one child aged under five. 98 per cent of parents do not support increasing ratios in nurseries and 39 per cent believe that increasing ratios in nurseries will be dangerous, the survey found.

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Evening Standard - Is being a parent costing you a mortgage?

Faced with reduced earnings, high childcare costs and rising rates, families are struggling to secure mortgages. We hear from Londoners paying the parent penalty as they grapple with high childcare fees and mortgage chaos

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Nursery World - Public behind plans to expand funded early education as long as challenges are tackled - survey

Just 32 per cent of voters said they support the Government’s plan to extend the funded entitlement when made aware of low funding rates, challenges with the workforce and a lack of floor space. According to a report from the newly formed Early Education and Childcare Coalition on voter’s attitudes to childcare sector reform, over two-thirds (68 per cent) said they think it is a good idea in principle to expand funded childcare provision.

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The Guardian - Millions of UK parents struggle with mental health, survey suggests

UNICEF UK research says parents feel anxious, alone and unsupported, with poorest households hit hardest. UNICEF warns that expensive childcare, fewer support services and the cost of housing are contributing to parents worrying about their children's development.

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The Independent - How can parents and children battle back-to-school anxiety?

Being organised can be the key to reducing stress as the new academic year begins. With schools opening their doors again, both parents and their children could be experiencing a mixture of emotions, including anxiety. Recalibrating and getting back to regular programming after the summer holidays isn’t always straight forward. Here’s how parents and children can beat back-to-school anxiety…

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Nursery World - Many providers to receive £5 or less per hour for funded places

Despite DfE claims that childcare settings will now receive a ‘boost’ in funding rates (as of last week - 1 September), many providers say they are to receive £5 or less per hour for three and four-year-old places.

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school building site

BBC News - Concrete crisis: Headteachers in weekend dash to make schools safe to open

Headteachers in England are in a race to find ways to reopen their schools after being told to shut buildings made with unsafe concrete. Many from the 104 affected schools are busy rejigging timetables, seeking alternative classrooms and trying to rent temporary toilets.

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Huffington Post - Yes, You're Forgetting Something — But Don't Be So Quick To Blame 'Mommy Brain'

The brain changes that new parents undergo are much more complex than a misplaced set of keys. Marie speaks with neuroscientists to get a better understanding of the brain changes that take place during this period.

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Daily Record - DWP urged to reverse new Universal Credit rules for parents with young children due to start this Autumn

More than 700,000 parents claiming Universal Credit will see changes before the end of this year. An online petition is calling on the UK Government to reverse an upcoming Universal Credit (UC) rule change that will affect parents of young children this year. The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) introduced changes to the frequency of appointments with work coaches for parents of children aged one and two-years-old in July and is set to implement further changes in the Autumn for those with children up to the age of 12.

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Sky News - Highest number of children with speech and language challenges ever recorded, report says

A charity is calling on the government to provide urgent support to students struggling with speech and language challenges after a survey of teachers reported up to one in five children are behind with talking - more than ever before. Speech and Language UK says this is the highest number of children with speech and language challenges ever recorded.

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Huffington Post - I Thought IVF Was My Biggest Parenting Hurdle — Then I Had The Baby

"The very last thing that occurred to me was that our child, so long-awaited and wished-for, could tip me into an emotional free fall." Purnima discusses the challenging emotions many parents face in the perinatal period, particularly postnatally.

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iNews - How I became a better mother in two weeks – with a radical approach

When the parents change, promises child-behaviour expert Paul Dix, everything changes. Mother of two, Hannah Fearn puts his theories to the test.

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Huffington Post - Therapist Has Crucial Advice For New Dads Worried About Their Relationships

A new study, published in the journal Plos One, found first-time fathers seem to experience a bigger decline in relationship satisfaction in the first two years after having a baby than second-time fathers.

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BBC News - What is Humza Yousaf's big plan for Scotland?

Humza Yousaf's key idea is that expanded childcare provision is the best way to support families - creating a virtuous circle which helps parents into work, which in turn boosts the economy, providing more cash to support more people. A long-running project to roll out free childcare hours to younger children in a more flexible manner is continuing, with pilot projects for care from nine months old right through to the end of primary school.

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The Telegraph - Forget iPads – this box-shaped child’s toy is every middle-class parent’s best friend

Yotos are proving to be a hit with parents of youngsters who refuse to pick up a book – The Telegraph explores both the positives and potential drawback.

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iNews - Warning of price hikes for afterschool clubs next term – and childcare for 2024 summer holidays may cost £1k

Parents are increasingly seeking jobs where they do not require formal childcare and reducing working hours to avoid rising childcare costs.

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Reception classroom teacher

The Mirror - 'I'm a parenting expert – here's the key to a smooth first week back to school'

As parents start to think about preparing their children to go back to school, parenting expert Kirsty Ketley shares her tips to ensure a smooth transition.

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The Times - Grandparents provide 16 days of childcare over summer

Parents would have had to pay almost £1,000 for each child in childcare if grandparents did not help out. The Times explores the role of grandparent childcare in today’s society.

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BBC News - Three out of four schools in Scotland face strike closure

Three out of four primary and secondary schools in Scotland face being closed during three days of strikes by non-teaching staff later this month. The Unison union said 21,000 of its members working across 24 local authorities will walk out from Tuesday 26 to Thursday 28 September.

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Institute of Fiscal Studies - Three challenges facing the newest Children’s Minister

As the fourth Children’s Minister in the last 12 months, David Johnston is taking office in a crucial role at a crucial time. In this comment, we look at some of the big challenges that Mr Johnston will face when he starts work this afternoon.

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reception children classroom

EEF - Planning for progress: Four key resources for the new academic year

Kirsten Mould, experienced teacher and school leader, introduces some of our new key resources to support staff in improving outcomes for their pupils this year.

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Cute pupils smiling around a globe in classroom with teacher at the elementary school

UCL | Institute of Education - Early childhood education and care – taking a long view

Alison Clark, Claire Cameron and Peter Moss discuss how tinkering with a dysfunctional system is preferred to taking the long view and transforming early childhood in England.

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Research & Policy Development

Cute pupils smiling around a globe in classroom with teacher at the elementary school

Early Education and Childcare Coalition - PULSE CHECK: Public attitudes towards early education and childcare

The Early Education and Childcare Coalition commissioned the communications and behavioural change agency Claremont, in collaboration with More in Common, to assess the public discourse – to gain insights into the current mood and attitudes towards early education and childcare.

Read the report here
Reception classroom

Pregnant Then Screwed - 98% of parents do not support increasing ratios in nurseries

New research from Pregnant Then Screwed has uncovered that 98% of parents do not support the government’s decision to increase ratios in nurseries. The government is activating its plans to increase ratios in nurseries from 1:4 children to 1:5 children for two-year-olds in nurseries across Britain despite overwhelming objection to the plans during the consultation process.

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TUC - Every English region struggling to recruit childcare workers

TUC launches a call for a comprehensive strategy for the care workforce in England as new analysis shows every region of the country is in a childcare recruitment crisis.

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HM Revenue & Customs: Press release - Families urged to boost their back-to-school budget with Tax-Free Childcare

With the new school term starting, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is reminding families to open a Tax-Free Childcare account today to save up to £2,000 per child on their yearly childcare bills.

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UCL - New generation of babies to join first UK study of child development in two decades

Thousands of babies and parents are set to participate in a new UCL-led UK birth cohort study, which will aim to shine a light on the challenges faced by families as they emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic and navigate the cost-of-living crisis.

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Teacher and pupils working at desk together at the elementary school

Department for Education and David Johnston OBE MP - Press release: Childcare settings receive cash boost as funding rates increase

Nurseries and childminders across the country will be paid more from today for every government-funded hour they provide to parents.

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Ofsted - Research and analysis: Best start in life part 2: the 3 prime areas of learning

Ofsted has published the second part of its early years research review, which aims to support practitioners in raising the quality of early education. ‘The Best start in life part 2: the 3 prime areas of learning’, examines the factors that contribute to developing young children’s knowledge and skills in the three prime areas of learning in the EYFS – communication and language, physical development and personal, social and emotional development.

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speech and language uk

Speech and Language UK - Listening to unheard children: A shocking rise in speech and language challenges

Teachers now estimate 1.9 million children are behind with talking and/or understanding of words. This is the highest number ever recorded. For children who struggle to talk and understand words, their whole lives are affected. They are six times more likely to fail English tests at 11 and eleven times less likely to pass maths. They are also twice as likely to have a mental health problem, and twice as likely to be unemployed as an adult.

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