Empowering early years workers to identify and target areas of difficulty in pre-school children

H. Whiteley, C. Smith, J. Hutchinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (journal)peer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


This paper reports on a project aimed at providing skills and resources to support nursery staff in identifying areas of strength and need in 3‐ to 5‐year‐old children. The six participating nurseries were all in areas of high socio‐economic disadvantage. Staff were trained to administer, score and interpret a wide‐ranging screening inventory. Following the assessment of children at nursery entry, staff were given support in developing appropriate programmes of activities to address the weaknesses and build on the strengths identified for individual children. All the children were reassessed following a period of six months. Although time was a major issue, staff were generally positive about the screening process and recognised the worth of early identification and intervention. While 46% of 173 children screened at the start of the project had significant difficulties in some area of development, only 6.9% remained at risk on the screening measure following tailored input. Systematic screening was identified as important for alerting staff to difficulties that might otherwise go unnoticed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-166
JournalEarly Years An International Journal of Research and Development
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2006


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