Childminders and nurseries that are rated good or outstanding by Ofsted will
automatically receive funding for two-, three- and four-year-olds, the DfE
The plans come amid continuing concern about the cost and availability of
“Childcare is not always available at the time parents need it,” the
“The availability of before- and after-school and holiday care is a
“The traditional school day of 9am to 3pm does not always fit the demands
of working parents in modern society. Too few schools offer activities
before or after school that match the childcare needs of parents in
Ministers said they want to see primary schools opening for more hours in the
day, and for more weeks of the year to provide education, childcare and
“Schools are central to their local community, trusted by parents,”
the report says.
“The Government would like to see primary school sites open for more
hours in the day, from 8-6 if possible, and for more weeks in the year,
offering a blend of education, childcare and extra-curricular activities.”
It adds that it should be down to headteachers to make “sensible decisions”
about how to offer before- and after-school care.
The DfE suggested that primaries and secondaries follow the lead of schools
such as the Harris Academy Chain and Norwich Free School.
Norwich Free School has chidlcare facilities open from 8.15am to 5.45pm, 51
weeks of the year, and offers occasional sleepovers, the DfE said, while
every new Harris Academy will open from 8am to 6pm, as well as giving
parents the option of holiday childcare.
Education Minister Elizabeth Truss said: “Schools can do so much more to
increase the supply of trusted, high-quality childcare at a price families
can afford. Until now red tape has prevented them from doing so. Our reforms
today change this and will let schools offer high-quality before- and
after-school childcare as well as during the holidays – all in a trusted
She added: “Parents will love the idea that schools will find it easier
to run holiday clubs, especially over the summer.
“These reforms will mean that ordinary nurseries will also find it easier
to expand and even find new, bigger premises.
“We are also making it easier for friends and neighbours to offer
informal childcare by raising the limit from two to three hours before
having to register as a childminder with Ofsted.”
Today’s proposals are the latest move by the Government to reform childcare.
Earlier this year it was forced to ditch reforms relaxing the rules on the
numbers of youngsters that nursery staff and childminders could care for.
Deputy Prime Minister and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg blocked the
childcare ratio plans, later saying that the proposals were widely opposed
by parents and experts, and could have pushed costs up.
Under the proposals – put forward as part of a bid by the Government to make
childcare more affordable and raise standards – each member of staff would
have been able to look after four children aged under one rather than three.
The ratio for two-year-olds would have risen from four to six per adult.
Nansi Ellis, head of education policy at the Association of Teachers and
Lecturers, said: “The Government is right to prioritise making
childcare accessible how, where and when parents need it and at a price they
can afford. But the needs of children must not be sidelined.
“The Government must ensure the quality of care is not sacrificed to
cost, that buildings are fit for young children, with accessible toilets,
suitable areas for eating, and outdoor play, and that those who work with
young children are well-qualified to meet their range of different needs.”
Edited by Matthew Sparkes
Source Article from http://telegraph.feedsportal.com/c/32726/f/534871/s/2ebb0dba/l/0L0Stelegraph0O0Ceducation0Ceducationnews0C10A1825840CSchools0Eurged0Eto0Ehelp0Ewith0Echildcare0Bhtml/story01.htm
Schools urged to help with childcare
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childcare – Yahoo! News Search Results