Alliance comments on government's response to childcare funding petition

Commenting on the government's response to the petition, Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Early Years Alliance (formerly the Pre-school Learning Alliance), said: 

“It's incredibly disappointing, though not surprising, that the government has responded to this important petition by falling back on the same tired lines to justify its continued underfunding of the early years sector.

“The response once again makes reference to the fact that the National Audit Office described the Department for Education’s review of childcare delivery costs as “thorough and wide-ranging”, conveniently ignoring the fact that the description was based on the incorrect understanding that the review was based on financial evidence from 2,000 childcare providers.

“What’s more, the government refuses to take any action until their next cost review is published, despite the fact that independent analysts Ceeda has already shown there’s an almost two thirds of a billion pound shortfall in funding, and that the government’s own-commissioned surveys have acknowledged that providers are struggling to remain sustainable.

“The government is well aware that the sector is struggling – but instead of treating this petition with the respect it deserved and committing to finally tackling inadequate funding rates, ministers chose to bury their heads in the sand once again. We urge the Department for Education to stop stalling and start dealing with this problem: the sector simply doesn’t not have time for the government to drag its feet on this issue any longer."


  • The Early Years Alliance is the largest and most representative early years membership organisation in England. A registered educational charity, it also provides high-quality affordable childcare and education to support children and families in areas of deprivation throughout the country. 
  • The Alliance represents 14,000 member settings and supports them to deliver care and learning to more than 800,000 families every year. We deliver family learning projects, offer information and advice, produce specialist publications, run acclaimed training programmes and campaign to influence early years policy and practice.
  • The Alliance website is