The long-term gains from good childcare

The benefits of receiving high-quality childcare can be felt by the recipients years later, new research has suggested. According to the study, adults who took part in such an education programme in the 1970s are finding the experience is still bringing them advantages today.

As part of the Abercedarian Project - led by the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute in the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill - youngsters were given considerably more years of education than others of the same age.

It was demonstrated that both boys and girls involved in the initiative were more likely to go on to higher education, while also being employed on a more consistent basis.

Craig Ramey, a Professor and Distinguished Research Scholar at Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute - created in 2007 - said the findings show "a clearer than ever scientific understanding of how early childhood education can be an important contributor to academic achievement and social competence in adulthood".

Dr Lucy Maddox, Chartered Psychologist and Child & Adolescent Clinical Psychologist, commented: "Early childhood is an important time and the influence of input from parents and teachers should not be underestimated. This research echoes previous findings that good quality adult-child interaction early on can reap benefits far into the future."