School readiness is a key measure of early years development across a wide range of developmental areas. Children from poorer backgrounds are more at risk of poorer development and the evidence shows that differences by social background emerge early in life.

Children’s education and development of skills are important for their own wellbeing and for that of the nation as a whole. Learning ensures that children develop the knowledge and understanding, skills, capabilities and attributes that they need for mental, emotional, social and physical wellbeing now and in the future. Children with poorer mental health are more likely to have lower educational attainment and there is some evidence to suggest that the highest level of educational qualifications is a significant predictor of wellbeing in adult life; educational qualifications are a determinant of an individual's labour market position, which in turn influences income, housing and other material resources. Educational attainment is influenced by both the quality of education children receive and their family socio-economic circumstances.

The Bolton picture

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