Essay Example on Measuring and Assessing the Effect of Early Intervention Policies








Measuring and assessing the effect of early intervention policies such as Sure Start can be lengthy and complicated because it involves analyzing the outcomes over a number of years from the early years into later childhood The Labour and Coalition Governments each constituted that a multi year longitudinal study be carried out The National Evaluation of Sure Start NESS and Evaluation of Children's Centres in England ECCE respectively to determine and analyse the effect of Sure Start against its policy objectives The Evaluation of Children's Centres in England ECCE is a six year study ordered by the Department for Education to proffer a distinctive in depth analysis of the impact of various approaches in the management and delivering of children's centre services The project is run in collaboration with NatCen Social Research and Frontier Economics The study concluded that children's centres set up to support parents of young children actually assist in improving the mental health of mothers and functioning of families but that these benefits are being eroded by continuous cuts to the finance of the local authorities DfES Bate Foster 2017 The National evaluation of sure start NESS on the other hand was established in 2001 and it followed up with the children in local programme areas It found improvements in outcomes at the time of the children's centres roll out some of which can be attributed to the improvement in the quality of service resulting from standardisation NESS 2005
Over time new mechanisms were introduced to improve the quality and quantity of services provided in children's centres Office for standards in education children's services and skills Ofsted conducted inspections to determine the quality of childcare provided in children's centres from 2006 and from 2010 it also inspected the quality of children's centres Bouchal and Norris 2011 Children's centres can be rated to have been greatly successful over the years They played an important role in the development of services for young children and their families This is an aspect the government was previously not involved with There is a widespread agreement that early years interventions are very important and that government needs to support them Children's centres were successful in ameliorating children's social skills and also parents confidence especially among the very poorest families There is limited evidence to show the effect of this programme
This is relatively because it is difficult to establish cause and impact without a design and also because the effect on children's outcomes may only become noticeable later in their lives so the proof is not yet physically available Bouchal and Norris 2011 Royston and Rodrigues 2013 stated that in order to raise and improve awareness of what services the children's centres render it is required that children's centres have a very strong comprehension of who the disadvantaged families are in their various areas Staff members must be able to recognize the target support and reach out to disadvantaged families Practitioners we consulted reported difficulties in identifying and reaching out to disadvantaged families in their local area The two main issues highlighted were a lack of access to relevant data of these families and their children and also problems with working alongside other local agencies and children's centres Effective partnership working is essential to ensuring children's centres can recognise disadvantaged families and make sure that they are aware of the services available Multi agency working across local areas should be at the heart of children's centre practice so families can get the holistic support they need Conclusion and Recommendations Every child has a right to the best possible start in life and also the right to the opportunity to achieve their full potential Poverty should not dictate the future success of any child neither should it prevent them from discovering their talents Sure Start children's centres reshaped the provision of local services in an area where services had been previously disintegrated and where many different professions would have to work together The policy developed on innovative and experimental work thereby universalising a service that was previously local The implementation was very successful in terms of delivering the capital project and also transforming the services provided Sure Start should be properly monitored for effective and efficient delivery of the services it was created to deliver Sure Start children's centre can be rated successful but with a lot of room for further improvement

The under listed recommendations will assist in getting the centres to where they are supposed to be so they deliver the needed and necessary services as at when due DfES Bouchal and Norris 2011 and Katz and Valentine 2009 1 There should be no further cuts in funding for key early intervention services for children and families as continuous cuts to the available funds reduces the quality and quantity of service 2 The allocated Funds for children's centres should be ring fenced so there is enough provision to support young children and their families particularly for groups that are hard to reach 3 The government should pilot the introduction of registering births in children's centres as well this will enable the centres to follow up with the children from birth 4 All local Health services should have systems in place for the proper sharing of live birth data and other relevant information with children's centres in their area for continuity purposes and to avoid duplication 5 All Local authorities should communicate with their local children's centres to determine the need for a review of reach areas Royston and Rodrigues 2013

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