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In May 2015, the Centre for Research on Families and Relationships(this will open in a new window) was commissioned to conduct a two-year evaluation of the Bookbug programme. The aim of the study was to examine how, and to what extent, Bookbug impacts on the lives of families in Scotland, and on the knowledge, attitudes and practices of early years professionals.
Overall, the evaluation has found that the Bookbug programme is high quality, understandable, transferable into different local settings and hugely respected by those involved. Families and professionals value the Bookbug programme and regard it as having positive impacts.
In addition, the Bookbug message and approach is clearly evidence-based and is being delivered in a clear, concise way, complementary to national and local policy objectives.
Bookbug is making an important contribution to positive engagement with families who face barriers accessing services. The majority of professionals stated that the Bookbug programme has allowed them to reach families that they otherwise would not.
Main challenges include ensuring quality and consistency across the programme, widening the benefits and coping with sectoral complexities and pressures on resources. The greatest issue is not, therefore, a question of whether the Bookbug programme can support Scotland’s families to read, talk, sing and cuddle more, but rather that the context of diminishing resources impacts on delivery of the Bookbug programme.
The report highlights a number of recommendations which are influencing developments in the Bookbug programme.