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New research has found that targeted music lessons for under-fives in deprived areas help to close the gap, particularly for children with complex needs.

The Local Government Association says it is 'inevitable' councils will be forced to close more children's centres unless the Government provides extra funding.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited a Sure Start centre in Ballymena where they met people who have completed an intensive parenting programme.

The Health and Social Care Committee wants the Government to produce a long-term strategy for the first 1,000 days of life to improve support and services for children and families.

The Government’s shift in focus towards childcare as a means of getting parents back to work, away from good quality early years education, is affecting settings’ quality and impacting social mobility, a cross-government report warns.

Thousands of campaigners against the closure of maintained nursery schools have signed a mass petition presented to Parliament yesterday by more than 30 MPs.

Norfolk County Council is to press ahead with its plans to close 38 of its 53 children’s centres.

Teachers working in Leicester City’s children’s centres are at risk of losing their jobs because the council says it can no longer afford them.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has launched an awards scheme for early years settings to support children’s health, well-being and development.

All but seven of Norfolk’s 53 children’s centres could close under proposals put out by the council.