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Time to invest in the children's workforce

Ask children's services leaders - whether a director of children's services, head teacher or nursery manager - what motivates their staff, and most will say it's a passion to improve outcomes for children, not the wage that comes with it.

Early help must prove it cuts care demand

Graham Allen's 2011 report Early Intervention: The Next Steps makes clear that the real savings from early help lay in its ability to reduce the numbers coming into care to such an extent that fewer high-cost residential facilities would be needed.

Benefits of funded childcare need selling

When searching for reasons for the low take-up of funded childcare for disadvantaged two-year-olds in England, debate has focused on whether providers are being adequately remunerated to create sufficient places.

Strategy must boost youth opportunities

The government's long-awaited Civil Society Strategy recognises the "transformational impact that youth services and trained youth workers" can have on disadvantaged young people.

Incentives are key to halt school exclusions

The education committee's report on exclusions and alternative provisions makes it abundantly clear that the current system is failing some children, and that rising exclusion rates are a reflection of this.

Grenfell must bequeath legacy of collaboration

Looking for silver linings to come out of a disaster such as Grenfell Tower would be churlish. However, the way community groups and charities have responded to the tragedy, which claimed 71 lives, 19 of them children, on 14 June last year, is an example of what can be achieved when organisations work in collaboration.

Government must commit to make PSHE mandatory

One of the watershed moments of 2017 for the children's sector was the government's decision in March to legislate for the introduction of age-appropriate relationships and sex education (RSE).

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