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  • Author or Editor: Kirstine Hansen x
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This chapter examines differences in Millennium Cohort Study (MCS) children's achievements at age 5 as rated by teachers. It notes that these teachers' assessments provide another view of MCS children's development at age 5, complementary to the cognitive and behavioural development indicators. It explains that in some cases, the teachers' assessments provide information for children who did not do the cognitive assessments that were part of the MCS 3 instruments, so this is an additional benefit of Foundation Stage Profiles (FSPs). It observes that children's development in the early years has been shown to be related to their success in later life in a range of areas including: education, employment, and avoiding crime and early parenthood. It notes that determining why some children do better than others in the early years is a key issue for policy and is crucial in attempts to reduce inequalities.

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This chapter provides new information from the Millennium Cohort Study (MCS) to examine the extent to which parents do actually choose the schools their children attend, as opposed to simply enrolling them in their local school. It also explores how successful parents are in securing their first choice of school and the reasons for their choice. It examines the academic studies on school choice, before moving on to describe how the MCS data are particularly well suited to considering questions about school choice. It then describes the extent of school choice in the cohort, and describes the most common reasons why parents choose the schools they do.

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The first five years

This book documents the first five years of life of the children of the influential Millennium Cohort Study, which is tracking almost 19,000 babies born in 2000 and 2001 in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. This book is the second in a series of books which will report on the findings from the data and follows on from Children of the 21st century: From birth to nine months (The Policy Press, 2005). It takes an extended look at the children's lives and development as they grow and begin formal education, and the implications for family policy, and service planning in health and social services.

The chapters in this book are written by experts across a wide range of social science and health fields and form a unique look at the early lives of children that cuts across disciplinary boundaries. It is essential reading for academics, students and researchers in these fields. It will also be of relevance to policy makers and practitioners with an interest in children's early years, family life, child development, child poverty, childcare and education and health care.

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This chapter introduces the UK Millennium Cohort Study (MCS) which is the fourth of a set of world-renowned national cohort studies in Britain, each following a group of individuals drawn from the population at large from the time of their birth and onwards through later life. It contains the origins and objectives of the study, along with the results of its first survey. It notes that the first of these nationally representative cohort studies, the MRC's National Study of Health and Development, follows people born in 1946, followed by the 1958 cohort National Child Development Study (NCDS), and later by the British Cohort Study of 1970 (BCS 70), which are following members into mid-life, complete with records of their childhood, education, health, employment, and family formation. It further notes that each cohort study forms a resource for a wide range of research into many social and medical areas.

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This chapter picks out some themes that have emerged from the different aspects of the children's lives covered in the Millennium Cohort Study (MCS). It draws together a few implications for the future. It notes that the threads running through this volume and this study tell of diversity, mobility, and intergenerational transmission. It explains that the diversity of the points from which the MCS children have started out in life include inequality in their family origins, while variation and inequality are beginning to emerge in the development paths of the children themselves. It further explains that on mobility, the longitudinal data permits a view of the fluidity of the families' situation over the first five years in family composition, poverty, parental employment, location, and childcare. It notes that the study also provides an important building block to assess secular change in intergenerational social mobility, and detailed evidence on the various routes through which parents transmit well-being and also social advantage to their children.

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