Mums stay home or ‘baby’s brain suffers’

Herald Sun (Aust) September 03, 2008

MOTHERS should be paid to stay at home with their child for the first two years or their baby’s brain won’t develop properly, the New South Wales Commissioner for Children and Young People said. The state’s most senior adviser on children’s policy, Gillian Calvert, said the one-on-one interactions between a mother and child during these years were vital to healthy brain development and the learning of social and communication skills.

“We have evidence that maternal employment during an infant’s first year of life can have a detrimental effect on their cognitive development,” she said. Children’s author Mem Fox caused a tirade earlier this week when she chastised mothers who put their babies in childcare. Ms Calvert said yesterday there was plenty of scientific evidence that the one-on-one full time care of a parent was necessary in early years. “The science is compelling,” she told The Daily Telegraph  yesterday.,21985,24286012-662,00.html