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We invite you to help develop Labour's early-years policy

I have been asked to chair a Labour party inquiry team into early-years provision. Members include academics, campaigners, local authority representatives and practitioners from all relevant professional backgrounds in the private, voluntary, and statutory sectors. The early- years team is hosting seminars for invited people to address specific issues such as training, legislation, funding, publicprivate provision and quality.

Labour has produced a statement of intent outlining the objectives and principles for an integrated, coherent, and comprehensive provision of early-years services. I would like to invite your readers to submit evidence, to further the debate and open discussion to as wide an audience as possible.

The statement of intent recognises the need for an integrated approach and unifying framework under an "early-years service" which will build on Labour's commitment to nursery education for all three and four-year-olds.

We want to develop a high-quality learning and caring experience, accessible to all young children and parents in all areas.

Labour will develop a commitment to a curriculum entitlement for young children and will maintain the professional status of early-years teachers, reviewing ancillary qualifications in the meantime.

It is vital to build on the best of existing models of good practice, whether in the private, state or voluntary sectors and to learn from previous experience.

Any comments or suggestions on the above would be very welcome in the form of submissions to me, to arrive no later than June 30.

MARGARET HODGE MP House of Commons London SW1A

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