The tiny country of Singapore has an ambitious plan for its youngest citizens and their parents: quality and affordable childcare.
In the next five years, the government’s goal is to help create 200,000 spots for babies as young as two months to six years in large centers that dot the island. These schools can hold anywhere from 300 to 1,000 children.
The plan is based on new research that shows how the early years are crucial for building strong neural connections as well as nurturing kids who will grow up to be emotionally and socially stable.
Singapore takes this science seriously. The country has a department dedicated to early childhood development, and the prime minister even discussed the importance of preschool in his annual address to the nation last year.
We visited one of these centers on the island. Watch our video to see the government’s strategy behind these childcare centers.
This reporting is part of a series supported by a grant from the Bernard van Leer Foundation. The author’s views are not necessarily those of the Bernard van Leer Foundation.