“The Government needs to use the forthcoming Spending Review to properly resource all early years settings to ensure that we can make a significant difference to the attainment gap.”
Responding to an Early Years Alliance report which found that half of parents said the Government hasn’t given enough childcare post-lockdown, Cllr Judith Blake, Chair of the Local Government Association’s Children and Young People Board, said:
“Childcare providers have been a vital part of the nation’s response to COVID-19 and councils worked closely with them to ensure that vulnerable children and critical workers had the childcare they needed during lockdown.
“As we enter the next phases of the pandemic, it is vital that all parents have access to the good quality childcare they need to enable them to return to work, while ensuring that children have the support they need to develop school readiness.
“However, early years and childcare providers have not had access to the same funding as schools to stay open. A loss of income from parent fees means that a quarter of providers now fear closure, rising to a third in more deprived areas.
“It is essential that we have enough childcare places to support families to ensure the country can recover from COVID-19, both economically and socially. The Government must therefore provide additional funding at a national level to protect childcare providers.”