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Childminder numbers continue to fall

By Rachel Lawler
 
child playing childminders ofsted
The number of childminders registered with Ofsted decreased by 3% betweeen 31 August and 31 December 2018, according to the latest statistics released by Ofsted.
 
This is part of a wider trend that has seen the number of registered childminders drop 17% since 2015.
 
Wider trends
However, the overall number of registered childcare places in England has remained relatively stable as the number of places offered on non-domestic premises has increased.
 
There are a total of 77,200 childcare providers registered in England, down 2% overall between 31 August and 31 December 2018.
 
Quality
95% of registered childcare providers were judged either 'good' or 'outstanding' in the latest statistics – this has remained largely the same since August 2018, but is significantly higher than in 2015, when just 85% were either 'good' or 'outstanding'.
 
Data from Ceeda has previously found that the number of childcare places available varies regionally. The data found that areas of disadvantage tended to have fewer available childcare places on average.
 
Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Alliance, commented: "While today’s figures show that nurseries, pre-schools and childminders continue to deliver quality early education, the woeful underfunding of the early years sector is taking its toll on dedicated and passionate practitioners.
 
"Ongoing research by the Early Years Alliance shows a stressed, unappreciated and underpaid workforce so it is no surprise that Ofsted found childminder numbers are continuing to fall by 3% (1,000) in just one quarter.
 
“Saying this, over 9 in 10 settings are achieving Good and Outstanding ratings which is a testament to settings and the committed practitioners who continue to educate our youngest children.”
 
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