A STUDY INTO the impact of early educational programmes which involve both children and their parents has shown that those from disadvantaged areas benefit most.
The study, which focused on the pre-school education of children within the Tallaght West area of Dublin, was carried out as part of the National Early Years Strategy which was announced earlier this year by the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Frances Fitzgerald.
The study found that children who took part demonstrated improved attendance, behaviour and social skills upon entering school, results which the Childhood Development Initiative said showed a greater need for targeted programmes in disadvantaged areas.
The reports recommendations included:
- A greater focus on speech and language
- The provision of well-trained early years practitioners
- The continued commitment by all government departments to consider the benefits of early educational targeting in future decisions
- The replacement of child education programmes which have no demonstrable impact on educational outcome with evidence-based programmes
The CEO of the Childhood Development Initiative, Marian Quinn, said that over 2,000 children in Tallaght West have benefited from their programmes since 2007.
Quinn said that attendance by parents had led to an improved home learning environment which had, in turn, benefited their children.