New online service to help Redbridge pre-schoolers learn

Cllr Elaine Norman said she fully supported the schools adjudicator's decision partially upholding t

Cllr Elaine Norman said she fully supported the schools adjudicator's decision partially upholding the council's policy to give sibling priority to families who live within a mile of their school. - Credit: Redbridge Council

Redbridge Council has launched a new online package of support to help youngsters continue to learn, while children’s centres remain closed.

The new virtual service is called EYPAD Online and it will help parents focus on the key activities that will boost their child’s progress across the main developmental areas.

EYPAD (Early Years Play and Development) Centre was launched in February to offer high-quality and flexible services to parents with pre-school children.

Based at Cranbrook Children’s Centre, The Drive, Ilford, it pioneers a new style of sessional play with online booking, a welcoming café, and with plans for weekend opening.

It is widely recognised that the first two years of a child’s life are the most critical in laying the foundations in the brain for future learning and development.

Communication and understanding, emotional development, social skills, and critical physical skills all begin in the womb.

Cllr Elaine Norman, cabinet member for children and young people, said: “The past few months have been unbelievably tough for those with children, especially those who are at such a young and impressionable age.

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“It’s great that parents can now access this fantastic range of support and advice online, while the centres remain closed.,

“Our fantastic children’s centres are often a lifeline for families in Redbridge and provide vital learning to children and massive support to parents.

“While social distancing restrictions continue, we will continue to provide innovative services to support families and young children and provide the very best advice, information, and practical support to anyone who needs it.”

Each day has an area of focused activity against each of the three prime areas of child development, including a fact sheet full of ideas, links to online resources, demonstrations, and practical activities.

For those wanting something closer to the children’s centre experience, it has a growing range of sessions such as baby massage, misic group, Busy Babies, and Great Parenting with Parent Gym.

Families can also benefit from a range of one-to-one support by emailing a request to