Increase the focus on early language in the early years
Early Years Strategic Plan submission by the Talking Matters Network
The Talking Matters network gave feedback to the Ministry of Education about the proposed Early Years Strategic Plan at our February network meeting. Network members stressed:
Parents are children’s first communication partners. The system must recognise the importance of family and particularly parent-child interactions. All families have strengths.
More young children are starting ECE earlier and spending longer in care. Care needs to be organised so infants and toddlers have stable relationships with caregivers. There is an urgent need for higher adult to child ratios for infants and toddlers.
There needs to be an intentional focus on early language development across the system because early language is such an indicator of child wellbeing.
We need a more intentional and sustained focus on communication and language development in initial teacher education and professional learning and development.
The importance of nurturing te reo Māori and heritage languages throughout the early years. Read our full written submission here.