Early Childhood Forum

ECF - at the heart of Early Years from birth to 7 years
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If you would like to find out how to become a member please go to our membership information page.

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If you would like to contact ECF please email your enquiry to: earlychildhoodforum@yahoo.co.uk


The Early Childhood Forum (ECF), brings together national organisations and professional associations in the early childhood sector for all young children from birth to seven. ECF exists to promote inclusion, challenge inequalities, debate issues, celebrate differences and develop consensus to champion high quality experiences for young children and their families.

News & Events

ECF does Twitter and Facebook


ECF has renewed its social media links for the benefit of members and other EY professionals.  The new Twitter handle is:


Supporting Children's Social & Emotional Well-being During and After Lockdown

Dr Helen Dodd of the University of Reading in conjuntion with the University of Sussex / Playfirst has asked that members of ECF read and support the attached document. This can be done in the following ways:

Talk about it and share the link to the recommendations on social media tagging @playfirstuk and using the hashtag #playfirst. This is probably the best link:http://www.sussex.ac.uk/broadcast/read/51954

1.Email playfirst@sussex.ac.uk to formally endorse the recommendations. The list of endorsers will be made public over the next day or two. They can add a few lines about why they think it is important if they want to
2.Write to ministers asking for the recomendations to be followed, Gavin Williamson, Minister for Education has been sent a copy.
3.Talk to journalists to increase media activity around the recommendations.

Download: Play_First__Supporting_Children’s_Social_and_Emotional_Wellbeing_During_and_After_Lockdown.pdf

DfE EY Funding Arrangements

Vodcast on early years funding arrangements to support childcare sufficiency

On 28 April, the Department for Education (DfE) published guidance setting out how, in exceptional circumstances and only when other options have been exhausted, local authorities may use their dedicated schools grant (DSG) funding differently during the COVID-19 outbreak in order to secure childcare for the children of critical workers and for vulnerable children.
Any setting which sees their early entitlement funding reduced in order to fund childcare places elsewhere will be able to increase the proportion of their salary bill eligible for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme in line with the Department’s guidance on access to the scheme.

Foundation Years hosted a video podcast with DfE to answer your questions on these funding arrangements. The vodcast covers:
• DSG funding flexibility for local authorities
• Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme calculations, including a worked example
• Interaction between DSG funding flexibility and the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
Recorded 1 May

Watch the vodcast

ECF Early Childhood Forum