Local kids doing better in key development indicators

16 April 2013

Stephen_Jones-331.jpgFederal Member for Throsby Stephen Jones said kids in the Illawarra and Southern Highlands are doing better than they were three years ago, improving in all five of the key development indicators.

According to the latest round of data from the Australian Early Development Index (AEDI) released today, Australian children have improved their results since the first AEDI data collection was held in 2009.

Data was collected in May 2012 on nearly 290,000 children, representing 96.5 per cent of children in their first year of formal schooling.

This second round of data shows that children in our region have improved their development in the areas of social competence, emotional maturity, language and cognitive skills, communication and general knowledge, and physical health and well-being Jones said.

In fact, the number of children who are developmentally vulnerable in one or more areas has fallen by almost 5% since 2009.

These great results show that the hard work of local community organisations to better support needy kids and their families is really working.

This latest round of data can also be used by schools, community groups, early childhood centres and other organisations to help develop special programs for those children in the Illawarra and Southern Highlands still at risk of falling behind.

Stephen Jones said research shows that investing time, effort and resources in childrens early years benefits them and the whole community.

These results are encouraging but we know there is always more to do to better help our kids and give them the best possible start in life, Jones said.

Thats why the Labor Government is investing a record $23.2 billion over the next four years in early childhood education and care. And its why we will implement the National Plan for School Improvement so that every child gets a world-class education no matter which school they attend.

To access the 2012 AEDI data go to: www.aedi.org.au