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The Family Justice Review

The Family Justice Review Final Report was published in November 2011 highlighted a range of issues in the current system and proposed far-reaching reforms .The Government plans to accept the majority of the Panel’s recommendations. The key points to highlight are that Government will be:

  • Putting children at the heart of the process, so that their needs are the paramount concern;
  • Speeding up care cases, committing to limit the length of care cases to six months, down from the current average of 55 weeks;
  • Increasing support to help parents settle their disputes outside of court. But for those parents who do go to court, we will be consulting on legislation to ensure that courts work on the presumption that, in most cases, a child’s welfare will be best supported by an ongoing relationship with both parents. The legislation will be clear that this is not about equal division of time, but the quality of parenting received by the child ; and
  • Establishing a Family Justice Board to drive performance improvements in the system.

The report and Government Response can be found here.

2 Year Olds Entitlement
Several events are planned to be held around the country, starting on 2 March, which aim to inform and take views from the sector on the new two year olds entitlement. It is hoped that a good mix of local authority people and early years providers will be able to attend these events. Each event will include a presentation from a 2011-12 trial which has been testing new delivery systems regarding two year olds. The Department for Education will share early thinking on possible eligibility criteria for the 40% of two-year-olds nationally due to be entitled to their free places from 2014.

The events that are currently in the diary are:

  • Friday 2nd March, Nottingham
  • Tuesday 27th March, Peterlee near Sunderland
  • Friday 30th March Bristol

Further events are in the process of being planned and will be announced as soon as possible. If you are interested in applying for a place or want to find out more details please contact please email earlyyears.mailbox@education.gsi.gov.uk

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