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DfE Consultation: Working Together to Safeguard Children revisions

The DfE is consulting to seek views about three substantive changes to the statutory guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children, 2013 (Working Together).  The three proposed changes being consulted on are:

  • the referral of allegations against those who work with children;
  • notifiable incidents involving the care of a child; and
  • the definition of serious harm for the purposes of serious case reviews.

Following this consultation, the government proposes to update and replace the current statutory guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children revised and published in 2013. The consultation closes on 3rd February, 2015. The consultation can be viewed here


SEED Study Published

The Department for Education has released a new research report with findings from a qualitative study of childminders undertaken as part of the Study of Early Education and Development (SEED).  This qualitative study is aimed at exploring characteristics of current provisions, childminders experiences of offering funded two and three-year-old provision, as well as views of the infrastructure and support available for the sector. Twenty in-depth telephone interviews were conducted with childminders across England between May and September 2014.

In the context of the extension of the eligibility for free early years provision to two-year-old children in the 40 per cent most deprived households, childminders can play an important role in achieving this. The study looked at how the sector could support childminders with achieving this goal.

Sufficient capacity, high quality provision, and infrastructure to support the sector are the key themes identified in the report and reflects on suggestions made by childminders. In terms of capacity to deliver funded provision, the study concluded that the number of childminders offering funded paces might increase with a rise in the funding available for the three and four-year-olds, payment structures designed to minimise cash flow difficulties, and as more information is disseminated.


Next phase of SEED Study continues

The Study of Early Education and Development (SEED) study is well underway. Over 200 visits have already been carried out to early years settings across the country. Thank you if you have already participated in this valuable research work. Feedback from our consultants about the visits and how welcoming settings have been has been overwhelmingly positive.

Please be aware that you may be contacted by 4Children to be part of the SEED study. This is a high profile study which will inform future policy in early years practice. The Department for Education has commissioned the Study of Early Education and Development (SEED). It is updating the evidence from EPPSE (Effective Primary, Pre-School and Secondary Education)  The study is being carried out by NatCen Social Research, working with Frontier Economics, the University of Oxford and 4Children, on behalf of the Department for Education (DfE). We really hope that if your setting is invited to take part that you will be able to participate and do your bit to champion early years policy.


New organization set up to bring early years trainers together

A new organization, NEYTCO – National Early Years Trainers and Consultants – has been set up which brings together experts in the sector to offer mutual support for trainers and consultants and a one-stop-shop for early years settings, local authorities, schools and others.

The organisation’s website includes a directory with details of early years trainers and consultants and members have access to a range of benefits including specialist advice, guidance, training and support.

For more information visit


LED Events

4Children are pleased to announce the next round of the Learn Explore Debate (LED) events which we run as the Department for Education’s Early Years and Childcare’s strategic partner. As usual these events are funded through The Children’s Partnership and carry no cost for attendees.

These events are aimed at organisations, local authorities, leaders and managers of all schools and settings, and all involved in early years. The sessions will give the opportunity for learning and sharing together as well as giving the latest information in relation to the early years and childcare.   The dates for the events are:

  • 26th Feb Manchester
  • 27th Feb Leeds
  • 2nd March Newcastle
  • 3rd March Birmingham
  • 5th March Taunton
  • 6th March London

Please Note: We are still in the process of finalizing the event details and will not be able to book, or hold a place for you, for any of the events yet. We will update you as soon as we are able to take bookings for these events.

Family Action Conference: Values in Action

On January 21st 2015, Family Action will host a free conference at Birmingham City University. This event will give participants the opportunity to look at innovative ways of partnership working and is aimed at social care, health and education managers.

The conference will include five workshops covering the following topics:

  • Wrap Around Childcare in schools
  • Perinatal support services
  • Recruiting, training and retaining volunteers
  • Key elements of family support
  • Providing quality Holiday Kitchen provision

To view details of all the free workshops available on the day, and to book your place, visit

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