A policy-to-practice paper is presented of early childhood inclusion in England. The article aims to report the benefits of early intervention services and early childhood inclusion for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), document the chronology of policy development, and discuss research evidence about policy-to-practice considerations for early childhood inclusion. Policy development for children with SEND in England has been informed by international human rights and European inclusion agendas and has been significantly revised and reformed recently with a new Children and Families Act (2014), which places families at the center of individual education, health, and care plans for children SEND. The article discusses the practicalities of delivering policy initiatives for children with SEND in a diverse and fragmented early childhood market and suggests possible future directions for policy and practice.
Centre for the Study of Practice and Culture in Education, Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences, Birmingham City University, Birmingham, United Kingdom.
Correspondence: Carolyn Blackburn, PhD, Centre for the Study of Practice and Culture in Education, Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences, Birmingham City University, Room A025, Attwood Bldg, Franchise St, Perry Barr, Birmingham B42 2SU, United Kingdom (Carolyn.Blackburn@bcu.ac.uk).
This paper has drawn on existing research and policy documentation. The paper is not the outcome of a funded project and there are no conflicts of interest.