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Children's Centres

Volume 404: debated on Thursday 8 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what steps are being taken to ensure that the proposed new Children's Centres have a senior manager with an early years teaching qualification. [109298]

Children's Centres will provide integrated care and education for young children, health services, family support, and a base for child minders. Managers of Children's Centres will need to have the leadership and management skills to co-ordinate a multi-disciplinary team.Children's Centres will be required to have strong support for the teaching and learning offered. This should be secured by the employment of qualified teachers so that children using the centre have their activities planned and substantially led by a teacher with early years training or experience. After listening to representations from the teaching profession, the Sure Start Unit has identified that in most centres the employment of an early years teacher on a half-time basis would achieve this objective. However, we expect that this would be a minimum which many centres would exceed, and that others would build on over time.