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PVI sector delivers 80% of 30-hours places

By Rachel Lawler

child playing PVI settings
Statistics from the DfE have revealed that 80% of three- and four-year-olds are taking up their 30-hours of funded childcare at a PVI setting. As of January 2018, just 18% of 30-hours places are taken up at maintained nurseries and primary school nursery classes.
15-hours and two-year-olds
The statistics also reveal that 92% of three-year-olds and 95% of four-year-olds are benefitting from the universal 15 hours of funded childcare. The number of eligible two-year-olds accessing funded places has increased from 71% in 2017 to 72% in January 2018.
Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Alliance, commented: “We have long said that private voluntary early years providers would play a pivotal role in delivery of the 30-hour offer, and these statistics have proved this to be the case.
Valid concerns
“Why is it, then, that the government still refuses to listen to the valid concerns of the very sector that is so critical to the successful roll-out of this policy? The simple fact is that current funding rates do not meet the ever-rising costs of providing 30-hours places – and yet, nurseries, pre-schools and childminders across the country are expected to survive on them until at least 2020.
"Every week, we see more and more providers being forced to close their doors, and yet the government continues to deny that there’s any problem.
Today’ figures show that any hope of the 30-hours offer succeeding in the long-term rests on the private and voluntary sector – but without adequate funding, more and more providers will find that they simply cannot afford to continuing offering places. While some may be able to survive in the short-term by increasing fees and introducing additional charges, this isn’t sustainable in the long term.
"Neither parents nor providers should have to pay the price for a pledge that government chose to make.”
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