Children’s secretary Ed Balls today launched a six-week public consultation on the government’s priorities for children and young people over the next ten years.
Balls kicked of the consultation with the first in a series of debates on the issue, attended by 50 parents, teachers, children and social care professionals, at a new academy school in Bristol today.
He said the consultation would help shape a ten-year government children’s plan, which will set out how it will improve opportunities for children and meet the five Every Child Matters outcomes.
The Time to talk consultation is considering what the respective roles of families, communities and government should be in bringing up children, and how to keep children and young people out of trouble.
Ed Balls has also set up three expert groups covering policy for children aged nought to seven, eight to 13 and 14 to 19 respectively. Gloucestershire Council director of children’s services Jo Davison will co-chair the first group with children’s minister Beverley Hughes.
Balls was appointed to head the new Department for Children, Schools and Families in June, in one of Gordon Brown’s key opening moves as prime minister, which brought all policy responsibilities for children and young people under one roof.
The DCSF also said it would announce its comprehensive spending review settlement, which covers expenditure from 2008-11, later this month. It has already announced funding for youth services, the Children’s Fund, Sure Start and extended schools.
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