Government’s £50M Boost to Childcare is a Travesty!
The Government is investing £50M to create almost 9,000 new free places for eligible three & four year olds on their 30 hours free childcare offer, but it is a complete travesty!
First of all, only 200 nurseries out of the over 13,000 registered with Ofsted will benefit. Most nurseries currently have places available– the national average occupancy is 70% so there are many spaces readily available – we do not need more! A waste of £50 Million!
Second, the ‘eligible’ children are from working parent families – NOT those who may need it the most! This is not a fair scheme for all families!
Third – the ‘free childcare’ 30hr rate for everyone else is so grossly underfunded that many nurseries will be forced to review their services or may even be forced to close. For those that survive, the portion of cost not covered by the funding rate will have to be passed on to fee paying parents of children under 3!
We need the Government to use the £50 million to further support the existing childcare sector in a way that we actually need (talk to us, don’t ignore us), to support ALL working families with a child under 5 (not just 3 & 4 yr olds) and remove the words ‘Free Childcare’ as you cannot stipulate that, when the service in a scout hut compared to a full day care nursery costs considerably different rates to provide!
It seriously concerns me that our Government refuses to see what is basic common sense and good business strategy and favours instead dictatorship in its funding, a waste of public money and a strategy that no one can comprehend!
Just how much more can the sector stand before many nurseries are forced to close which will have a hugely damaging effect on the Government’s plan to get parents back to work?
Just how many more reports will we see such as those on Good Morning Britain on nurseries providing ‘sub-standard’ care because the Government is enforcing an insufficient funding rate and that the place be provided ‘FREE”?
Just how much more can parents with children under the age of 3 afford to pay because nurseries are forced to put the Government’s under-funded costs on to them?
The Government is forcing the childcare sector in to crisis, or is that their plan? I really do not know how much more the sector can take or just how many nurseries will be forced to close. It is yet another sad day in the world of childcare!