Belfast Telegraph

Concern over draft strategy for Northern Ireland child services

Serious concerns about the future of services for young children will be raised with the education committee at Stormont today.



Children in Northern Ireland (CiNI) — the regional umbrella organisation for the children’s sector across Northern Ireland — is due to meet with the committee this afternoon.

The meeting follows the Department of Education’s publication of its draft strategy for young children aged up to six.

Pauline Leeson, director of Children in Northern Ireland (CiNI), said: “Over two years ago CiNI was promised an integrated approach to the education and child care needs of our youngest children.

“However, the proposals outlined in the draft strategy from the department support the ongoing split between early years education and child care services,” Ms Leeson continued.

“This is despite local and international evidence which highlights that the learning and care needs of young children are inseparable.”

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