NINETY toddlers from the most disadvantaged families in Cheshire West are to be offered free early education.
Cheshire West and Chester Council has given its backing to the national scheme, which will run from September until March 2011.
The project follows pilot programmes trialled by 32 local authorities which involved the provision of early education and child care to the most disadvantaged two-year-olds.
The initiative will cover about one in six of disadvantaged two-year-olds in the borough, which covers Chester, Ellesmere Port & Neston and the former Vale Royal area.
The guidelines will focus on economically deprived families and on aspects such as children with speech and language needs.
The scheme will provide at least 10 hours of child care a week.
“The project will help the authority to improve the educational attainment of the most disadvantaged two-year-olds in the borough with good quality early education,” said Tory Cllr Arthur Harada, executive member for children’s services.
Places will normally only be provided in child care settings rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted.