Childcare Costs Rise Five Per Cent More For Under-Twos

March 10, 2020

A new report has stated that parents are having to find five per cent more for childcare than 12 months ago, an average of £131.61 per week or £6,800 a year for a part-time nursery place for two-year-olds, according to the BBC.

Coram Family and Childcare’s 20th annual childcare survey finds that parents have been hit by childcare costs rising well ahead of inflation, according to the country’s most comprehensive annual survey of childcare costs, published today.

’There are seven different types of childcare support’ but ‘parents find it difficult just to find out what’s available to them’

According to the report, whilst most families can get some support for childcare costs via cost subsidies and free entitlements, the system has become far too complicated. In England, there are seven different ways for families to get childcare cost support, and each has its own eligibility criteria. Families risk missing out on what support they are entitled to.

Claire Harding, head of Coram Family and Childcare, said: “Good childcare is essential: it enables parents to work and boosts children’s learning. But for far too many families in the UK, it just isn’t working. Recent government investment is welcome, but many families still face crippling costs, especially in the period from the end of parental leave to when a child turns three.

“There are seven different types of childcare support depending on families’ individual circumstances, and many parents find it difficult just to find out what’s available to them.

She is calling on the government “to reform and simplify the childcare system, so every parent is better off working after paying for childcare, and every child has access to childcare which supports their learning and development”.

There is also the issue with availability, which has not improved much since last year. In England, 56 per cent of local authorities have enough childcare for parents working full-time, compared to 57 per cent in 2019.

Parents are faced with a postcode lottery for available childcare places and prices, which can wildly vary across the country.

London and the South East are the most expensive regions in the UK, where the cost of a part-time nursery place for a child under two is £165.47 and £144.90 per week respectively. The least expensive regions cost £116.25 in the West Midlands and £113.76 in Yorkshire and Humberside.

Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Early Years Alliance, said: “The government says that it wants to support parents with the cost of childcare but as this report shows, by refusing to invest what’s needed into the early years sector, it is actually making things worse for many families across the country.

“The fact is that childcare costs for under-twos are rising above the rate of inflation because childcare funding for so-called ‘free entitlement’ schemes isn’t increasing anywhere near it.”

He added: “Every year, the cost of delivering childcare places gets more and more expensive, and yet government funding has consistently failed to keep up.

In April, nurseries, pre-schools and childminders across England will see their staffing costs increase hugely as a result of national living and minimum wages rises of more than six per cent – but the biggest increase in funding any provider is likely to see is two per cent and that’s on the back of years of stagnant funding.

The Childcare Survey 2020 sets out actions that Scottish, Welsh and UK governments can take to help parents find affordable childcare:

• Reform Universal Credit so it doesn’t lock parents out of work: increasing the maximum amount of childcare costs paid under Universal Credit and moving to upfront payments for childcare.

• Regularly review the funding rate for free early years entitlements to make sure that they meet the cost of delivering high-quality childcare.

• Extend the 30 hours free childcare for three and four-year-olds in England and Wales to families where parents are in training, to help parents get better jobs.

• Double the early years pupil premium, to boost outcomes for the most disadvantaged children.

• Reallocate any underspend against the budget for tax-free childcare to other parts of the childcare system – and focus this on the most disadvantaged children.

Coram’s annual survey is based on data from 175 local authorities collected between November 2019 and January 2020.

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the little workshop sk1
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Wow!!!! Were to begin.. this is by far the best nursery I could have sent my children too. The staff are extremely... friendly helpful and ensure the children are cared for and they learnt so much. My children settled really well and have both enjoyed being here. Seeing them so happy and always excited for the next day at paintpots Manchester makes me feel so at ease leaving them. They are always involving parents in everything and make you feel like one big family. A massive thank you to everyone who works there and all you have done. Looking forward to extending our family into their welcoming nursery again in the future.read more
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Strong Mama
Strong Mama
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Lovely nursery. My son went in for 2 days but the staff were great and genuine. Will definitely be returning when I... start my second year of studies next year and my son is 2. Ideal location. Lovely staff. Thank you everyone. You've been greatread more
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My child has been here and its absolutely fab! The staff are so good and the pics they send every daybonto my phone... make my day!! Thank you xxread more
asrar
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15:45 21 Mar 19
Staff seems to be very close to children and that is very important. In addition, the nursery encourage children to... engage in messy and sensory play to learn and develop.read more
mark pearson
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Sent my step-son here for over 2 years before he started school. Perfect location, great staff and most importantly, he... loved it. Only issue was the refurbishment of the building taking place, but they even managed to use that as a learning experience and the kids all loved the builders and diggers opposite!!read more
Megan Davies
Megan Davies
12:41 31 Jan 18
I Sent my little girl here from a small baby and watched her grow in to a confident, bright young lady. I could not... praise and thank the staff here enough, they were like our second family. Very relaxed, friendly, homely environment with the children at the centre of everything they do.read more
James Bradley
James Bradley
12:38 27 Jan 18
I sent my child to this Nursery after having sent his 2 older siblings. I work in the City Centre and they love the... place, they all did. There are staff that have been there for over 10 years, location is fantastic and whilst the recent renovation works have not been ideal, it hasn't affected the care one bit. Somehow, they even find a way to make activities that involve the construction materials. Can't recommend highly enough!!read more
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SharQuita Pemberton
15:29 27 Mar 17
Best nursery my daughter has attended. Embarrassed to say but due to domestic issues she has been to 4 nurseries. now... that I'm in the clear and can chose any nursery she has started back at this nursery❤️❤️ Kind understanding staff. Very friendly and professional.read more
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