The lead administration is the Welsh Government.
The early years are fundamental to a child’s life chances. During a child’s early years their physical, cognitive and social and emotional development is most susceptible to influence, both positive and negative. At the eleventh summit in September 2008, the Council adopted Early Years Policy as a new work sector with the Welsh Government as the lead administration.
This area of work brings together officials from each Member Administration who are responsible for national, island and regional policy on early years. The work of the group encompasses, amongst other things, early years education, childcare, health and support for parents. There are currently four areas of focus within the work sector:
• Collaboration between all agencies concerned with health, education and social services to provide a ‘joined-up’ service for children and their parents/carers and to make better use of resources
• Transition arrangements (between home and child care settings, and then to school) to improve outcomes
• The early years work force; and
• Evaluation and obtaining better value for money.
Early Years is the subject of the BIC Summit in Wales to be held in November 2012.