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50,000 summer term 30-hours codes have not been validated

By Rachel Lawler

Nadhim Zahawi 30 hours
The Department for Education has published statistics on the number of 30-hours codes issued and validated for the summer term 2018.
 
A total of 377,535 codes were issue by 31 March but just 327,558 have been validated by a provider. This means that around around 50,000 eligible families have not been able to validate their code and secure a 30-hours place.
 
Nadhim Zahawi, parliamentary under-secretary of state for children and families, tweeted: “The number of parents securing a code for 30 hours of free childcare has risen to over 377,000. This offer is saving hardworking parents money on their childcare bills and giving them extra cash in their pockets.”
 
Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Alliance, commented: “With 50,000 parents yet to have their codes validated, it’s clear that the government is going to face a real challenge in ensuring the delivery of sufficient 30 hour places during the summer term.
 
“Given the Department for Education itself has acknowledged that the demand for places during this term will bring ‘a variety of challenges’, it’s clearly vital that providers are encouraged to engage with the 30 hour offer – but the fact is that this simply won’t happen unless the government addresses the issue of underfunding.
 
“Given that most providers will have seen little to no change in funding rates this April – despite significant increases in minimum wage requirement and other costs – it would not be surprising if many were unwilling to consider increasing the number of 30 hour places they offer, meaning that many areas of the country are likely to see a shortage of available places. This is all fixable – but only if the government accepts that its current head-in-the-sand approach simply isn’t working.” 
 
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