Stacking interventions to reduce inequities

The Changing Children’s Chances (CCC) project team have published two new research snapshots showing that stacking interventions can help reduce childhood inequities.

The development of good mental health and strong reading skills in childhood begins from birth and is shaped by early environments and experiences. Not all children have an equal chance at developing good mental health and strong reading skills.

Inequities in children’s reading skills and mental health are unfair and unjust differences caused by preventable social, economic or geographic conditions. These inequities are causing a gap, known as an inequities gap, in children’s reading skills and mental health.

Children experiencing socioeconomic disadvantage are more likely to experience poor reading skills and mental health problems compared to children not experiencing disadvantage. Addressing challenges in the early years is critical as it can reduce the impact of inequities on children’s outcomes now and into the future.

Access CCC’s new research snapshots:

  1. Reducing inequities in children’s reading skills
  2. Reducing inequities  in children’s mental health

Both research snapshots show that stacking interventions starts to address inequities.  Using new and creative ways to analyse existing data, we found that:

  • By supporting families to read at home with their children and increasing children’s attendance at preschool, we were able to reduce the risk of poor reading skills among children experiencing disadvantage.
  • By increasing children’s attendance at preschool and improving parents’ mental health, we were able to reduce the risk of poor mental health among children experiencing disadvantage.

This shows that we can improve children’s health, development and wellbeing outcomes by focusing on prevention in the education and family environments. We argue that stacking a range of strategies in children’s early years is necessary. Targeted policy interventions should operate alongside other services and initiatives. These research snapshots highlight that we can take steps to building a solid base that helps children develop strong reading skills and good mental health.

To find out more visit the CCC project website:

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