“Raising children is joyful, important and complex.
Research into brain development clearly shows that a child’s success at school is set in the first few years of life and that high-quality care of children at home and in early childhood education settings can prevent learning difficulties at school.
So if children are to get the best start in life, they need capable, confident parents to nurture and inspire them and an excellent learning environment to foster their curiosity and abilities.
It is remarkable to see how strongly the research evidence about early childhood shows that parents benefit greatly from having high quality health, family support and early education services to help them raise their children. I have seen this in my work as an early childhood teacher and education researcher.
But too often education, health and family services work in isolation from each other, despite often dealing with the same families.
It means child development problems or issues that families need help with, are often not identified early and acted upon quickly. It means families face long waiting lists and travel long distances when they get referred from service to service or to several services at the same time.
Families and service staff themselves identify these deep structural problems as barriers to progress and quick action.
We’ve listened to families and acted on the best education research to create a College whose mission and structure of on-site, integrated education, health and family services is aimed at overcoming these barriers.
Our College also recognises a simple truth: often the most effective way to help children, is to help adults become better parents, and, along with their children, develop an enthusiasm for learning new skills.
By working in partnership with parents we can achieve great outcomes for children.”
Director, Family & Children’s Services