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Carter: National Ignores Parental Choice

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

29 July 2008 - Parents need to be confident that their under twos have access to quality sleeping rooms and it is incredible that National should call for the removal of that opportunity, says Education Minister Chris Carter.

"National harps on about flexibility and choice for parents while at the same time removing a parent's ability to insist on a quiet, safe place for their infant to sleep," Chris Carter said.

Chris Carter will be writing to all centres advising them of the new criteria for early childhood centres. Already 90 per cent of all centres have sleeping rooms that will fit within the new requirements.

"The 10 per cent of centres who do not currently have adequate facilities to meet the new criteria have six years in which to comply," Chris Carter said.

The new system comes into force on 1 December 2008 and existing centres will have until November 2014 to adhere to the new regulations.

The review of existing regulations began in 2003 and involved extensive consultation with the sector and the public. More than 605 existing services provided feedback and 73 per cent supported separate sleeping rooms for infants.

"The research suggests that children sleep best in situations where they are not being continuously disturbed by other activities going on in the centre.

"The new criteria for sleeping rooms for under two year olds recognises the need for parents to be given the option of undisturbed rest for their child," said Chris Carter.

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