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Government confirms no plans for annual review of early years funding
OnDec 7, 2016
There are no plans to review early years funding annually, the government has confirmed.
During a House of Lords debate on Monday, the Earl of Listowel, a crossbench peer, asked if the government is "planning to conduct an annual review of early years childcare funding to ensure sustainability and quality".
However, Lord Nash, a Conservative education minister replied that "there are no plans to conduct a formal annual review".
Commenting on the news, Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Alliance, argued that that it is crucial that early years delivery costs are monitored to ensure that government funding is sufficient.
“The government’s failure to work with local authorities on this has contributed to the present funding shortfall, and we know that this is only going to worsen with the roll-out of the extended hours scheme," he said.
“Ultimately, if rising business costs aren’t matched by increases in funding, providers will have to choose between charging higher rates for paid-for hours or going out of business. Either way, it will be parents or providers who end up picking up the tab for this poorly thought-out government policy.”
The Alliance's Fair Future Funding campaign is calling on the government to introduce a statutory requirement on local authorities to collect annual data from providers on the cost of delivering free entitlement places - and, to undertake an annual review of free entitlement funding levels and how they compare to the cost of delivering places, so that funding can be increased when necessary.
For more information about the campaign, or to sign up as a supporter, visit www.pre-school.org.uk/fairfuturefunding