On Friday 27th November, the Duchess of Cambridge and The Royal Foundation released a report on understanding public attitudes to the early years.
The new report revealed that parents underestimate the importance of early years development. The government echoed this in the Spending Review yesterday, with the £44 million funding a clear decrease from the £66 million the previous year. This is not enough to ensure the survival of early years settings.
The Montessori Group welcome the Duchess’s report on attitudes to the early years and firmly believe there must be more focus on early years. Early years education is often cast aside and deemed less important than the education of older children, despite there being clear evidence that these are vital years in children’s development. We hope this will raise public interest and understanding of the importance of early years.
The report also gave insight into the struggles parents have been facing during lockdown. This chimes with research undertaken by the Montessori Group, which revealed 54% of parents fear they are failing their child, despite 41% of young children stating the best thing about lockdown has been spending more time with their parents.
The launch of the International Montessori Institute at Leeds Beckett University this year is a key step in grounding early years education as a fundamental part of the current education system and will help professionalise a sector that we know to be absolutely vital in ‘building back better’.