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Sharon Hodgson MP Shadow Minister for Children and Families


Rea
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Nor us, but they would be a fool to think an established setting with a wonderful team, won't go down without a fight.

There are not many settings in our area that are not in rented community buildings to facilitate this, so I'm not sure how they could achieve it.

Lets keep vigilant and wait and see what comes next.:(

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We currently offer 5 x 5 hour sessions per week so could deliver the full 25 hours. HOWEVER we have 30 children / day and currently with most children accessing only the 15 hour entitlement have an overall register of about 55 children.

 

IF we have 30 children / day accessing 25 hours / week our overall register will drop to 30 children which will have the net effect of reducing the number of spaces available - this is just our setting - if the same thing happens to the majority of settings in my LA then the LA will have problems meeting their legal obligation to ensure enough spaces for those that want them!!

 

ALSO the reduced spaces available with have a knock on effect on the number of Two's Too spaces which given that this offer is being extended makes me wonder where they will all go!

 

ALSO I can envisage a situation where all children on the register will end up being 3 / 4 year olds who then all leave at the same time to be hoovered up into mainstream school. At the moment in our area we are experiencing huge increases in birth rates so in the short term that wouldn't necessarily be a problem but if and when birth rates drop we could find ourselves loosing all our children in one hit and have no carry over business to keep us going for the next year.

 

Is this proposal for all funded children including 2 year olds?

 

My biggest worry is that currently the funding rates that we get paid do not cover our costs - we just about break even with the little bit of non funding income that we get from our fee payers. This will be blown out of the water if the offer is extended universally to 25 hours and unless funding rates are upgraded significantly to match actual cost of service then I can see a lot of groups shutting their doors or walking away from taking funded children altogether.

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