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Alliance launches #ThisIsEarlyYears campaign

By Rachel Lawler#ThisIsEarlyYears

The Alliance has launched a new campaign, highlighting the valuable role of the early years sector, particularly private and voluntary-run settings.

The #ThisIsEarlyYears campaign aims to make a positive case for greater government support for early years in the upcoming Spending Review.

The campaign will highlight the vital work that the sector does in supporting children’s early development  and the central role that many providers play in their local communities - and not just the challenges facing the sector.

Providers are asked to share positive examples of their incredible work for the Alliance to use in its lobbying and campaigning work.

Those who wish to do so can submit their stories here.

Providers are also encouraged to share stories about the positive impact of their work on Twitter, using the hashtag #ThisIsEarlyYears and tagging their local MPs to call for greater support for the sector.

The Alliance has also created an interactive page on their website detailing the number of childcare providers in each local authority, how funding rates have changed in the last three years in the area and the how current funding rates in each area compares to that paid to maintained nursery schools.

Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Alliance, commented: “With the Comprehensive Spending Review just around the corner, there has never been a more critical time to make a strong argument for more investment into the early years sector.

"This is particularly true for private and voluntary providers. We know that when politicians talk about maintained nursery settings, they don’t talk about the ‘childcare’ they provide: they talk about the quality early education they deliver – and it is no coincidence that the government has not hesitated to commit to ensuring that these settings are funded adequately in the long term.

“That’s why we want to change the narrative around PVI settings, and focus not just on preventing providers from closing but also why it’s so important they stay open, making a positive case for government investment.

“This is a real opportunity for nurseries, pre-schools and childminders across the country to shout about the great work they do day-in and day-out, and so we urge as many providers as possible to share their stories with us, show local MPs and policymakers the amazing impact they have on local families and say loudly and proudly: this is early years.”