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Rebecca

Invitation to Westminster APPG meeting

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As you all know we are sponsoring the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Childcare and Early Education. There is a meeting at Westminster on November 1st 2-3pm. As one of the sponsors we have 10 invitations that we can offer to providers who would welcome an opportunity to meet the MPs and put their views and circumstances across.

 

The purpose of the meeting, ahead of the Budget, is to examine why so many non-maintained childcare and early education providers across the country operate at a loss. Speakers and attendees will discuss the financial pressures facing such providers and discuss a range of ideas and possible policy solutions to resolve this. Early Years Minister, Robert Goodwill, has been invited to address the meeting, which will be hosted by the APPG’s Chair, Tulip Siddiq MP.

 

If you would like to come please DM me or email me rebecca@eyfs.info and I will get in touch with you. If you would like to come we would like you to invite your local MP too! (We will give you details of how to do this.)

It would be great for you to get involved!

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Would love to have attended but sadly we cannot afford cover! We are a maintained Nursery class and due to the drop in funding from £4.86 to £4.26 per child, low numbers (some that we have lost to not being flexible enough in extending the school day for working parents who are choosing a PVI to take their 30 hours) and a possible decrease as funded 2 year olds are staying at their existing setting. We are facing a deficit of nearly £30,000 and a claw back of up to £26,000 from the LA.

 

It really is dire and on top of that we were notified yesterday that 7 parents out of the 13 we offered a 30 hour 'funded' place got their application in too late (passed the August 31st deadline). This meant that we would lose another £6,000.

 

A scrambled phone call to the authority said there was nothing they could do and when we appealed to say how unfair it was e.g. no grace period at the beginning of the first term in and particularly as the August deadline is hard for schools to chase parents and remind them to get their application in as we are on the 6 week break, the LA relented and allowed 5 to be accepted. The fact that all 7 had had their eligibility confirmed and their codes issued should have meant that there was not a problem.

For the other two families, they now face the prospect of either paying a top up fee for the next half term until they can reapply for their codes ready for January or face not having the place at all then we could lose them altogether including their 15 hour universal offer. The authorities response to this was to say that they are working parents so should be able to afford to pay an interim top up pay... I kind of see this point in a way but some of these families are not super rich and are just able to afford getting back into work anyway. We sent a letter out today to the two families saying that we have not been given funding for their child's place for the Autumn term, that we have absorbed the cost for the first half term but now need to ask them to pay for the second half term. I await to see what their response is :-(

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Thank you apple for this really thoughtful example of how your setting is being affected. Are you happy for me to pass your experience on? I can do this generally, but if you were happy to be identified your example would have more impact. Obviously we will not share your identity without prior permission. Please let me know via DM or email rebecca@eyfs.info

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