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Schools and Community Groups to Share York Childcare Information


11:46am 25th June 2014

Information provided through City of York Council’s Family Information Service (FIS) will now be available to re-use thanks to a new service directory.

High quality and impartial information on childcare, youth clubs, children’s centres, parenting skills and classes has now been published for people to freely re-use under an Open Government Licence. This innovative approach means that web-developers and community groups can build new solutions to make use of the information is different ways.

Niall McVicar, Family Information Service Manager, City of York Council, said: “Our number one aim as a service is to get the right information into families’ hands so they can make informed choices for themselves and their families. By opening up the information we provide under and open government licence it will allow developers to create new ways for people to access it. This could be developing smartphone applications, integrating childcare information onto community websites or analysing the childcare market to see potential opportunities. The Family Information Service will still be here to offer high quality information for families and this new approach simply makes the information available to even more people.”

The new approach to publishing this information has already meant some schools have been able to easily add childcare information to their own websites.

The national charity 4Children have seen the benefits of this new approach and are encouraging other areas to follow York’s lead.

Tamar Shaw at 4Children, said: “It is helpful when authorities explore how they could open up their childcare data in this way. This can bring important information closer to families and empower them to understand their childcare options

The work to unlock the data has been funded through the Breakthrough Fund administered by the Local Government Association on behalf of the Department of Business Innovation and Skills. The scheme is part of a wider initiative to make City of York Council and the information available to it as open and accessible as possible.

For more information please visit http://www.yosd.org.uk/or contact York Family Information Service on 01904 554444.

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