Work on our new plan, Skills for Life, is well underway. This includes work on digital, programme planning tools and brand. In our plan, shaped by you, we said we’d start exploring early years provision once we’d secured external funding. Today, we’re pleased to announce that we have succeeded!
Scouts around the world are exploring how they can work with children at a younger age. We now know from research that key skills and attitudes are formed in the early years of life. The Department for Education has agreed to help fund 20 pilots in England: this will allow us to test different models for four and five-year-olds to see what works best.
We will also test ways of recruiting more volunteers from different backgrounds. In America, 75% of new parents from their early years programme became volunteers, so we’re hoping to see positive results here in the UK too.
Want to get involved?
We want to hear from Groups interested in trying out different ways of delivering a new programme for four and five-year-olds: we particularly welcome interest from Groups in more deprived parts of the UK. Groups do not have permission to start early years provision outside of these pilots. Unofficial provision is against our rules, could affect the pilots and is not insured.
We’ll keep you updated on our progress and whether there will be a wider roll-out in the future, or whether more testing is required. There’s no official name for the section yet – we’ll be testing options for this too.
You can read more about the pilots, early years research and evaluation on the website.