General News

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The Importance of the Right Technique When Children Brush Their Teeth

There’s a refreshing piece of good news for parents in the UK: according to official government statistics, the number of five-year-olds with tooth decay dropped to an all-time low in almost 10 years! However, don’t start celebrating just yet – around 25% of these children do suffer from tooth decay, and as Dr Sandra White, Director of Public Health at Public Health England, notes, “one child with tooth decay is one too many and there is still much inequality in dental health around the country”. Cavities are painful and extraction can result in big problems, including the need for implantation and bone augmentation in some cases, in adulthood. To avoid these painful and pricey consequences, make sure your child uses the right technique when cleaning teeth and gums.

 

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New APPG report on EY/PA has just been published

This new APPG report on EY/PA has just been published. A comprehensive document that covers all the main issues – please read the recommendations if nothing else! Policymakers now have a report that may inform their decisions regarding funding and provision for young children’s physical activity.

 

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Draft document for Australian Physical Literacy Standard

Please have a thorough read-through of this document – very interesting.

Much to recommend – although the ‘pre-foundational level’ – 0 – and the 'foundation and exploration level' – 1 - for the physical domain definitely need a review.

 

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The genesis of ‘playing out'

An interesting article on the genesis of the ‘playing out' movement.

No significant funding – just communities getting together to give all children the chance to experience what – for some of us – was a childhood ‘given’.

 

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iPads for Babies !!!

Nothing to say  - no damning comment would begin to do this justice.

 

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Online Survey for the DRAFT Australian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines

As yet we haven’t made much headway with the CMO/EY Physical Activity guidelines.

We didn’t get the leverage we expected within the revised EYFSC – and we don’t expect any guidance from government departments any time soon.

Which makes this Australian initiative very welcome indeed. Please have a look – and complete their survey.

I think this innovative, holistic approach is definitely worth considering – more parent-friendly and not ‘nanny-state’ in any way. The team at Wollongong are to be congratulated.

 

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ukactive Manifesto for an Active Britain

activematters fully supports ukactive in their drive to get ‘more people more active’ – but we should always remember that positive habits towards physical activity are formed very early on – and that adults must play an effective role in encouraging young children to engage in daily active play that will support their overall development.

 

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Timing of the decline in physical activity in childhood and adolescence

An interesting study by John Reilly and his colleagues – and very useful for us. If physical activity levels start to decline from aged 7 – as this study suggests – and not at aged 13 as has been claimed previously, then it is even more imperative that we in EY get some solid foundations in place and absolutely critical that the CMO/EY/PA guidelines are embedded in the EYFSC, and not treated as irrelevant footnotes that ‘may be referred to’ – as is written in the recent Revised Strategic Framework.

 

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Diabetes: Children 'not getting recommended checks'

BBC News | 31 May 2016 

Almost 75% of older children in England and Wales with diabetes are not getting key health checks, a study suggests.

Data from 27,682 children and young people showed 25.4% of 12-year-olds have the seven recommended annual health checks, such as eye screenings.

However, the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, which carried out the audit, says the overall picture is one of improving care.

Charity Diabetes UK said young people must be supported in early life.

 

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Children 'denied mental health support'

BBC News | Hannah Richardson | 28 May 2016

A total of 28% of children referred for mental health support in England in 2015 were sent away without help, some after a suicide attempt, a report says.

The Children's Commissioner's review of mental health services also found that 13% with life-threatening conditions were not allowed specialist support.

This group included children who had attempted serious self-harm and those with psychosis and anorexia nervosa.

A government spokesman said no-one should be sent away in need.

 

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Sturgeon announces school reform summit as part of 'bold' education plan

BBC News | Scotland politics | 25 May 2016

The Scottish government is to convene a "major summit" of education leaders in a bid to close the attainment gap between schools.

Nicola Sturgeon underlined education and the economy as her top priorities in a speech at Holyrood.

The first minister said her ministers aimed for "real and lasting progress towards true equality of opportunity".

Opposition parties said they would work with the government on education, but urged "genuine reform".

 

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Time to get active

Nursery World | Dr Lala Manners | 13 May 2016

Ahead of 4Children's Healthy Children, Bright Futures conference next month, Dr Lala Manners looks at how to tackle childhood obesity in the early years.

Childhood obesity is now an epidemic in the UK, with twelve per cent of children starting nursery overweight or obese. This number rises to 22 per cent at reception age, and 33 percent by the time children arrive at secondary school.

 

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Tackle pupil attainment gap in northern England, IPPR urges

Tackling the attainment gap between rich and poor pupils is the key to improving the performance of schools in northern England, a report has said.

The study by the Institute for Public Policy Research says northern secondary schools lag behind the England average.

The report echoes Ofsted's warning that without better education, the government's Northern Powerhouse economic plan will "splutter and die".

Education Secretary Nicky Morgan said ongoing reforms had helped poor pupils.

The attainment gap between disadvantaged pupils and their peers is "falling", but "the job is not finished yet", she said.

 

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Poor school buildings 'damaging pupils' health and education'

BBC News | Judith Burns | Education reporter | 11 May 2016 

Too many British pupils are trying to learn in classrooms which are damaging their health and education, say architects.

And too many teachers are quitting, blaming stressful and overcrowded working conditions, says the Royal Institute of British Architects.

It blames rising pupil numbers and government cuts to capital funding.

England's Department for Education says it will invest £23bn in school buildings over the next five years.

In England, only 5% of 60,000 buildings in 18,000 schools surveyed were in top condition, performing as intended and operating efficiently, according to Riba's analysis of government figures published last year.

 

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Sats protest: Parents to keep children off school

BBC News | Sean Coughlan Education correspondent | 3 May 2016

Parents are threatening to keep their children off school for the day in a protest about primary tests in England.

More than 40,000 parents have signed a petition calling for a boycott of primary school tests, which are due to be taken later this month.

Parents supporting the Let Our Kids Be Kids campaign have complained of a damaging culture of over-testing.

Education Secretary Nicky Morgan says taking pupils out of school "even for a day is harmful to their education".

 

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