5 Jul 2013

Ministry abandons early childhood education review

9:50 pm on 5 July 2013

The Ministry of Education has abandoned a review of home-based early childhood education, despite repeated calls for urgent scrutiny of the sector.

The review was set up in 2012 after the ministry said government subsidies could help pay for housework done by in-home caregivers.

Home-based early childhood education has been the fastest-growing part of the early childhood sector and includes Barnardos, au-pairs and nannies.

However in the past two years, two government advisory groups have called for an urgent review of the sector and the Government set one up late last year.

The Early Childhood Council said on Friday the decision to stop that work now is irresponsible and leaves thousands of children with sub-standard education and care.

But the ministry said many of the concerns about home-based services would be addressed by changes to early childhood funding and enrolment in 2015.