Why and How Is the Landscape of Childrens Services Changing in England

England has witnessed a change in children’s services in the past years, alongside changes in various social services. Shifts in institutional values have also contributed to this change, such as the gendered character of contemporary parenting and the gendered character of childhood, which have corresponding implications in the children’s services (Daniel, e al., 2005). Today’s children’s services argue the importance of using a gendered perspective in order to engage adequately with the causes and effects of child maltreatment. This perspective may be analysed as an outcome of the growing gendered character of the household and the workplace, which has characterised modern industrial societies like England. England has designed and implemented its early years’ educational policy in the period of 1997-2004 and presented some innovations in the policy, its evidence base, and delivery of new services. It suggests evidence concerning the expansion of services on the benefit of early years education on children’s development (Sylva and Pugh, 2005), a direction which children’s services as pedagogy are leading. Early year’s education in England is claimed to be transformed through integration of education and care at local and national level, the strong focus on families and children in the delivery of services, as well as the introduction of the Foundation Stage Curriculum 3-6 years and its birth-3 years supplement (Sylva and Pugh, 2005). Stone and Rixon (2008) stressed that while child-centred is the key, it is as important to seek the perspective of parents who are left with the child when all the professionals have gone home. Stone and Rixon also emphasised that it is important to recognise the value of families, which serve as one point for change and in which change itself can and should originate from, resonating with the changes in children’s services in England. The focus of change, as Rixon (2008) points out, has been on the challenges for practitioners of these currents, which likewise affect the experiences of children and their families.

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