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Our history

Early Education has been around for over 90 years. Find out more about our history.

For over 90 years, Early Education has worked to ensure that early childhood teachers and practitioners have the support to ensure that every child can fulfil their potential. Every child deserves the best possible start in life. A secure, safe and happy childhood is important in its own right and provides the foundation for children to make the most of their abilities and talents as they grow up.

Below are some key dates from our history:

  • 1923 The Nursery School Association is founded.
  • 1927 The first branches are formed to support work in local areas.
  • 1934 London Headquarters is founded.
  • 1944 The Association has 76 branches with more than 7,000 members.
  • 1972 Change of name to the British Association for Early Childhood Education (BAECE).
  • 1996 Introduction of our working title of Early Education, to make the core aims of the Association clearer to a wider public.
  • 2012 Publication of Development Matters, non-statutory guidance to support the Early Years Foundation Stage framework in England.
  • 2021 Publication of Birth to 5 Matters, on behalf of the Early Years Coalition, to provide guidance by the sector, for the sector to support the revised Early Years Foundation Stage framework in England

You can find out more by reading our extended history.