Campaign to get families using extended services

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A new campaign has been launched to help raise awareness of the range of activities, services and advice available through schools.

Over 20,000 schools are currently offering access to services for families in their local communities and thousands of children and parents are already benefiting. The new campaign aims to get even more families taking up the services available using radio and press adverts.

Children’s Minister Dawn Primarolo said: “Extended services are a fantastic way for parents and families to access a range of activities, support and advice in a quick and easy way. I hope that our new campaign will help even more families use and benefit from the services on offer in their local area.

“It’s great to see that more than 90 per cent of schools are already providing the full core offer to families in their communities and we are well on our way to ensuring that all schools are able to provide extended services – reaching the vast majority of school-aged children and their families - by the end of 2010.

“As part of the Government’s vision for 21st century schools, we are committed to offering all young people and families access to exciting and constructive activities and services - regardless of background or income. We know that extended services can help to raise young people’s motivation, aspiration and achievement, as well as improve behaviour. That’s why we’ve provided over £200m to subsidise extended services for the most disadvantaged families.”

The Government is providing over £200m funding from 2008-11 to help support children and families from disadvantaged backgrounds, through the extended services subsidy. The subsidy is helping schools to ensure that services are available to all young people - including those who may not normally be able to afford them.

The range of activities for families includes:

  • Before and after school activities including homework clubs, sport, music and arts activities - providing young people with a safe place to be before and after school.
  • Childcare from 8am-6pm for 48 weeks a year for primary schools, on the school site or through other local providers.
  • Parenting and family support, including parenting programmes and family learning sessions.
  • Swift and easy access to specialist services such as speech and language therapy and mental health services.
  • Community use of facilities including adult and family learning and information technology services.