Sure Start is failing ethnic minorities, report finds

12 Jul 07
The government's Sure Start project has failed to help deprived black and ethnic minority families, according to a report for the new Department for Children, Schools and Families.

13 July 2007

The government's Sure Start project has failed to help deprived black and ethnic minority families, according to a report for the new Department for Children, Schools and Families.

The report, Sure Start and black and minority ethnic populations, published on July 10, was based on a two-year study.

It found that the time needed to create links with minority communities had made some groups give up trying. It also reported that few minority staff were employed in senior positions, which sent out a negative message.

The evaluation was led by Gary Craig, professor of social justice at the University of Hull.

He said: 'Given what we know about the very high levels of deprivation among the children of some minority families… the Sure Start programme represents a substantial wasted opportunity.'

The programme has been similarly criticised in two previous studies, by the National Audit Office in December and one from Birkbeck College in 2005.

However, children's minister Beverley Hughes said the value of the £3bn programme would be seen in the longer term.

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