Sir Al Aynsley-Green (Professor Emeritus of Child Health at University College, London) set the scene for this Coram Life Education organised consultation event by stressing the importance of children at the current juncture. Society will be reliant on contemporary generations of children, Aynsley-Green argued, to support the increasing proportion of older people in future years. It is therefore vital that we create an environment in which children can fulfil their potential and become healthy and resilient individuals.
To achieve this end, Aynsley-Green argued, we need to adopt a more community-based model of children's services. Schools should become a community hub of services for children encompassing education, health care and play. Only with commitment by politicians to child-friendly policy are we likely to see improvement on children's health and educational outcomes, he concluded.