Eleanor Busby quotes Sir Peter Lampl in response to the IFS report on children’s centres in an article for the Independent.
Children’s centres, which have had their funding cut by two-thirds, significantly reduce the number of hospitalisations among children – especially those in poorer areas, a study has found.
Research by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) suggests opening a children’s centre – known as Sure Start – for every 1,000 children prevents 5,500 hospital admissions of 11-year-olds each year.
Sir Peter Lampl, founder and chairman of social mobility charity Sutton Trust, said: “At the peak of the Sure Start programme, there were over 3,500 children’s centres across the country. Yet these numbers have been decimated in the past decades.
“Many sites that are still open are only offering a fraction of the services they once did.
“It is a major issue that the support is now more thinly spread and inconsistent from one area to another. Thousands of families are missing out on the vital support that these centres can provide.”