Why integrate health and education reviews at age 2?
Age two is an important time for children and their parents. It is a time when problems with language development and behaviour can start to be identified, at an age where interventions can be more effective than they would be for an older child, making a real difference to a child’s future.
This is recognised in the fact that the Healthy Child Programme requires a health review at age 2 – 2 ½, and from September 2012 in the new Early Years Foundation Stage there is a requirement for parents to be provided with a written summary at age 2 of their children’s progress in the EYFS prime areas of learning. However, currently these two opportunities for review of a child’s progress at age 2 – 2 ½ are not integrated together in a coherent way.
Lack of integration can mean that:
- Parents receive only partial information about their child’s development from a particular professional’s viewpoint;
- Development needs/areas are not identified as early as they could be;
- There is confusion further along in the system e.g. in referral to other services about who is best placed to provide any additional support.