James Hempsall is director of Hempsall’s, managing editor of Children’s Centre Leader, and national programme director for Childcare Works. For 30 years he has worked in the children’s services sector driving service improvement, effecting change, and leading national implementation of key Government programmes in pre-school learning and childcare (e.g. two-year-old funding and 30 hours). His work has focused on improving learning outcomes for all children with a particular emphasis on least advantaged children, parental employment, equalities and anti-discriminatory practice. Hempsall’s projects support government and organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors to develop high quality and sustainable childcare, and support families to break the cycles and symptoms of disadvantage and poverty.