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Knowledge Makes Change Newsletter – January 2019

Knowledge Makes Change


You’re invited to the next Knowledge Makes Change Seminar – 21st March 2019

This seminar  will be at St Pauls Centre held 6.30 – 8.30.

The 8th evening in our expert Knowledge Makes Change seminar series will feature Neil Griffiths on Counting Stories – Maths & Literacy.
Neil Griffiths was a Primary School headteacher for 13 years before taking on the role of director of a National Literacy Project for the Basic Skills Agency where he introduced his original Storysack idea to schools and communities throughout the UK. After six years, Neil began to devote all of his energies to Storysack® and they are now available worldwide and have won many awards.

He has created award-winning play resources, written a nursery curriculum, a best-selling resource book on creative play, and imaginative material for the Early Learning Centre. He has developed a scheme for supporting English as an additional language and also finds time to write his own children’s picture books, Neil loves to tell a story and a story time with him is a highly entertaining event as he magically draws his audience into his storyworlds.

The Knowledge Makes Change seminar series aims to inspire and be informative on ‘what works’ for young children and their families to ensure the best possible outcomes.

Please go to Eventbrite to book your place.


Learning from Serious Case Reviews: Improving Practice (Children)

Glenys Johnston, Independent Chair, Safeguarding Partnership Board, will be delivering this workshop which is suitable for Strategic Leads, Team Managers or Frontline practitioners.

Date: 13th February 2019
Time:  1.00pm – 3.00pm
Venue:  Town Hall, St Helier

Learning Outcomes
By the end of the workshop the participants should be able to:

Understand why we do Serious Case Reviews, how and why the Safeguarding Partnership Board undertakes them
Identify what the professional’s role is in the Serious Case Review
Using the learning from both Jersey and English SCRs, explain what keeps individuals safe and protected and what effective inter-agency work looks like

To book your place please register on the Jersey Safeguarding Partnership Board website

Jersey’s Children First Twilight Training Opportunity – Free of charge

 The Jersey’s Children First Essentials course is suitable for staff from all Early Years settings including nannies and childminders.  This course explains the island-wide Jersey’s Children First approach, outlining the process of supporting children from the emergence of need through the complexities of engagement to carrying out a Child and Family Assessment.  Understanding the difficulties staff have in attending daytime training, we have provided two courses split into 2 x 2.5 hour twilight sessions on:

either 28th Jan & 4th February

or 18th & 25th March

Both courses will be held at Peter Crill House at the General Hospital from 6pm to 8.30pm.

To book, please click here (note that you will need to book into both sessions of your chosen course)


Education Minister to redesign funding for nursery places

The Minister for Education, Senator Tracey Vallois, has established a new Policy Development Board to focus on Early Years that will include addressing a new system of funding for nursery places. Senator Vallois said that the intention is for the academic year (Sept 2019 – Aug 2020) of the Nursery Education Fund (NEF) to be phased out in order to develop a new approach to nursery funding in 2020.

Currently, almost every child in Jersey has their nursery education subsidised by the States when they are aged 3 to 4, in the year before they start Reception at primary school. Through the Nursery Education Fund, all families can receive 20 hours of free nursery education for their child for 38 weeks in term time at a private day nursery, pre-school or school nursery.

Senator Vallois said that she will keep parents, carers, nursery providers and industry professionals informed and will consult with them through the redesign process.

Senator Vallois’s full statement is on the website


Research and practice from the UK and international contexts

Guidelines for children’s screen time: RCPCH

The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) has published guidelines to help parents manage children’s screen time. The guidance says that there is not enough evidence to confirm that screen time is in itself harmful to child health at any age, making it impossible to recommend age appropriate time limits. Instead, the guidance suggests parents approach screen time based on the child’s developmental age, the individual need and value the family place on positive activities such as socialising, exercise and sleep – when screen time displaces these activities, the evidence suggests there is a risk to child wellbeing.

You can read the guidance here

Reading to preschool children boosts their language skills

Parents and carers who regularly read with small children are giving them a language advantage of eight months, Nuffield-funded research from the University of Newcastle shows.

Led by James Law, Professor of Speech and Language Sciences, a team of experts found that receptive language skills – the ability to understand information – are positively affected when preschool youngsters read with someone who cares for them. They carried out a systematic review of reading intervention studies from the past 40 years, using either a book or electronic readers and where reading was carried out with a parent or carer. The review showed socially disadvantaged children experienced slightly more benefit than others.

Professor Law said: “While we already knew reading with young children is beneficial to their development and later academic performance, the eight month advantage this review identified was striking. Eight months is a big difference in language skills when you are looking at children aged under five.”

“The fact we saw an effect with receptive language skills is very important,” says Professor Law. “This ability to understand information is predictive of later social and educational difficulties. And research suggests it is these language skills which are hardest to change.”

The average age of the children involved in the 16 studies included in the review, was 39 months and the review looked at studies from five countries: the USA, South Africa, Canada, Israel and China.

Numerous research studies have shown that children with delayed language development do worse at school and have poorer outcomes later in life.

The researchers are now calling for public health authorities to promote book reading to parents.

“There have been lots of initiatives over the years to get books into the homes of young children,” said Professor Law. “What we’re saying is that’s not enough. Reading with small children has a powerful effect.  For this reason, it should be promoted through people like health visitors and other public health professionals as this simple act has the potential to make a real difference.”

The full report is available to read as a free download.

Change4Life teaches children how to cut sugar

Public Health England has developed resources for early years and primary schools to use as part of its Change4Life campaign. Created for use in English and Maths lessons, the resources will help children and their families understand how much sugar is in their food and drink and encourage making healthier swaps to reduce sugar intake.

The Change4Life early years lesson plan includes activities encouraging children to spot sugar cube invaders, use maths skills to find healthier swaps, and learn a new rhyme.

The early years lesson plan is available here.

Thank you for reading.

KMC is part of the Early Childhood Development Programme.  The programme is led by the National Children’s Bureau (NCB) in partnership with the States of Jersey and Jersey Child Care Trust, informed by the Education Department, Health and Social Services, the Early Years and Childhood Partnership and the Jersey Safeguarding Partnership Board. The programme is funded by UBS Optimus Foundation UK.

KMC newsletters are compiled and edited by NCB on behalf of local partners. If you have any questions or comments about KMC, please contact