Alliance comments on latest Ofsted sector statistics for March 2021

The Early Years Alliance has responded to the latest quarterly data from Ofsted on the early years sector, published today, for the period up to 31 March 2021. The data and headline findings can be accessed here: Main findings: childcare providers and inspections as at 31 March 2021 - GOV.UK (

Commenting, Neil Leitch, Early Years Alliance chief executive, said:

"We remain deeply concerned by the consistent downward trend in the number of providers in the early year sector, with childminders continually the worst hit.

"Ministers claim that they are putting record investment into the early years and yet, as our recent Freedom of Information investigation showed, the government has knowingly underfunded our sector for years, putting the affordability, quality and sustainability of early education and childcare provision at risk.

"The fact that 96% of providers continue to be rated as 'good' or 'outstanding' is testament to the commitment and professionalism of the early years workforce. However, the harsh reality is that without quick and decisive intervention, many of the settings currently providing these high-quality services may not be able to stay open for much longer."