Being Sleep Smart

Improving Safe Sleep and Settling in Early Years Services

With over 3,200 sudden unexpected deaths in infancy (SUDI) in Australia every year, Ternity Group recognises the importance of research and training in the prevention of fatalities that have such an immense impact on parents and the community.

Achieving responsive sleep, rest and relaxation practices in ECEC settings is an essential part of an ECEC day, providing learning opportunities and supporting healthy bodies and minds of our infants and young children.

46% of children across Australia attend a formalised Early Years Service where a high proportion (86% of ECEC Programs) provide their infants/children with sleep, rest and relaxation via a single standard sleep or rest period in the middle of the day.

The research also found that alarmingly 83% of services were observed to be noncompliant on at least 1 of 20 target safe sleeping measures.

44% were observed placing infants prone (on their stomach) or on their side and 67% used loose bedding, quilts, doonas/duvets, pillows, sheepskins or soft toys in cot.

To understand further, Ternity Group undertook their own independent survey of the ECEC sector and results revealed similar areas of concern.