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Social Research

National evaluation of Flying Start

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  • Release date: 31 January 2014
Flying Start aims to make a decisive difference to the lives of children in the most disadvantaged communities.

It offers eligible parents free quality childcare for 2-3 year olds, parenting support, an enhanced health visitor service and help for early language development.

Messages from the reports will be used to inform the future delivery of the Flying Start programme.

Synthesis report

Release date: 31 January 2014

The report summarises the methods used and examines the key findings in relation to the following areas: inputs and processes; outputs; and outcomes. It concludes with some lessons for evaluation, policy and expansion.

Impact report

Release date: 5 December 2013

This research aims to examine the differences that the programme has made for families.

The report examines the following areas

  • Access to and take up of family services.
  • Perceptions of services.
  • Parent outcomes.
  • Children outcomes.

Area case study synthesis report

Release date: 28 November 2013

This report examines the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of the Flying Start programme. It draws on data from in-depth case studies with all 22 local authorities in Wales.

Evidence from this research illustrates the varied development of the Flying Start programme across Wales. The findings suggest there has been a general improvement in delivery since 2009.

Qualitative research with high need families - Interim report

Release date: 14 October 2013

The aim of this research was to explore the experiences of high need parents engaging with the Flying Start programme, identify perceived impacts and inform the future delivery of the programme.

This report draws on interviews with high need parents about their perceptions of the Flying Start programme. The report discusses these parents’ experiences of the key Flying Start entitlements. The perceived impacts of Flying Start are also discussed before identifying some conclusions and lessons for future programme delivery.

Findings from the baseline survey of families

Release date: 14 December 2011

Results of the first wave of a longitudinal survey to measure the impact of the programme over time. The primary purpose of the survey was to collect quantitative evidence on process outcomes regarding service access of Flying Start, along with feedback on the sufficiency of support.

The survey was conducted in 2010 with over 3,500 families with children aged from seven to 20 months living in Flying Start areas and in selected comparison areas where Flying Start was not operating.

The report provides an insight into the nature of Flying Start Families and the challenges they face. It provides a wealth of information about the take-up and experience of Flying Start from the perspective of families. The report also explores the early influence of the programme. The findings will be used to inform the on-going development of Flying Start across Wales.


For information on Flying Start research and evaluation

Tel: 029 2082 3111

For general queries about the Flying Start Programme