Childhood Development Begins Earlier Than Thought

Childhood Development Begins Earlier Than Thought

Western Australia Minister for Education Elizabeth Constable

State Government To Sharpen Focus On Early Childhood Development

Victor P Taffa

The welfare of children in their earliest years will be the focus of a new initiative announced by Education Minister Liz Constable today as she released a review into educational practice in early childhood conducted by Professor Collette Tayler.

Dr. Constable said the State Government would focus on enriching the ‘craft’ of guiding and teaching children from birth to eight years in recognition of the key role played by early childhood educators advancing young children’s learning and development.

“Research shows that the early years even before compulsory schooling commences is the most important factor influencing later education and life outcomes.” the Minister said.

 

“Children make rapid progress in their early years and we have an obligation to children and their families to ensure that we maintain that momentum.”

“High quality teaching is a significant factor in achieving just that.” Dr. Constable said.

Dr. Constable said, over the next few months, the State Government will develop a full policy statement on teaching and learning in the early years, incorporating some of Professor Tayler’s findings.

“Dr. Tayler’s review found that early childhood educators wanted more guidance on curriculum and teaching practice in the early years.” the Minister said.

“The statement will provide early childhood teachers with clear guidance about what should be taught, and how to create a balance of teaching and assessment methods best suited to early learning.”

“This guidance will take into account the National Curriculum and the Australian Government’s National Quality Framework for early childhood education and care of which the Early Years Learning Framework is a key component.”

Dr. Constable said the State Government had a strong track record in providing high quality and accessible early childhood education and care for children and their families.

“These new initiatives build on the Premier’s recent announcement of the establishment of extended service schools, where parents could access education, community and health services on local school sites.” the Minister said.

“One of the most important ways to improve early childhood outcomes is to support teachers in their work with parents, childcare services and other early childhood professionals.”

“With schools, parents and early childhood professionals working together, we can make sure the children in their community get the best possible start in life.” Dr. Constable said.