James Hempsall has been awarded the OBE in recognition of his services to childcare on 13th June 2015. The honour marks James’ 25 years as an early years and childcare trainer, researcher and consultant.
Over the past three years he has led the Department for Education’s national support programme for the implementation of 15 hours a week of free early learning for up to 250,000 least advantaged two year olds (Achieving Two Year Olds - A2YO). A role and accomplishment that prompted the award of this honour.
Since 1999 he has been the director of Leicester based Hempsall’s, leading a team of up to 30. And this year he also became managing editor of Children’s Centre Leader, a quarterly journal for everyone leading children’s centre, early help and linked services. In the course of his career he has worked with all local authorities and thousands of early years and childcare providers to raise the capacity, sustainability and quality of provision for all children. In a varied career, he has also worked as: an out of school and playscheme worker and coordinator; on-site Traveller & Gypsies worker; children’s centre manager; out of school development worker; charity fundraiser, project manager and lobbyist.
“My work is all about fairness. We have worked hard at Hempsall’s to support all children’s social and emotional development, and their economic well-being, so they can have the best start in life. We have particularly focused on those that are least advantaged so they can be more equal with their peers and escape the economic and social traps they may find themselves in”.
“Rarely, if ever, does anyone receive such an honour without the privilege of working with amazing colleagues and partners. And I am no exception. And I would like to thank everyone who has helped me along the way from when I first started work, through to our recent project for two year olds.”
James’ work continues, and to mark the 15th anniversary of Hempsall’s he has set out the organisation’s 15 objectives to change and further develop the early years and childcare sector over the next 10 years – this is attached.