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Provider Influence on the Home Learning Environment: Part 2

The study was based on a sample of parents drawn from 12 local authorities. The sample comprised 339 parents at baseline and 223 at follow-up (although only 213 had a valid EHLEI score), an attrition rate of 34 per cent.

The local authorities were drawn from different parts of England, and were selected by the then DCSF. Local authorities were selected on the basis of having positive parental engagement strategies as well as an even geographical spread.

This research was not a randomised controlled trial of the impact of the work providers did with parents. The research team believed it would not have been ethical or feasible to change what nurseries and other providers already did to encourage early home learning. Instead, the research considered the amount and intensity of the early home learning support that was being carried out: the extent to which work was one to one with parents, and which key attributes and behaviours at staff and setting level were associated with greater change during the first four to six months in a funded childcare place.