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Living Wage !


SueJ
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Has anyone else seen this - much as I would love to pay all my staff the living wage - funding rates make this impossible. I thought that LAs were not going to be allowed to impose their own conditions in respect of the funding (although given the number of consultations that I have read I could have dreamt it) - Good luck with this one if you are in Birmingham!!

 

http://www.cypnow.co.uk/cyp/news/1143882/birmingham-providers-forced-pay-living-wage-retain-childcare-funding?utm_content=&utm_campaign=070514%20daily%20A&utm_source=Children%20%26%20Young%20People%20Now&utm_medium=adestra_email&utm_term=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.cypnow.co.uk%2Fcyp%2Fnews%2F1143882%2Fbirmingham-providers-forced-pay-living-wage-retain-childcare-funding

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Well, I'm not bothered! They introduced the condition that all staff and committee renew CRBs every 3 years but that was removed after 1 year, I like to think because I kept asking questions re: the consultation on it, the responses and the legality, all of which were ignored!

I'll just bombard them with questions again. :rolleyes:

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I've started the bombardment on Twitter! Due to only having 140 characters to use the question is simple... 'Is this allowed?' Times education, DfE, my MP, PreSchool Learning Alliance, Under 5 Contact, Nursery World, EYTalking and the councils own twitter account. Copy and paste as often as I can.

Watch this space ;)

Edited by Rea
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Dear Parent

I am afraid I have to inform you that, despite believing it is detrimental to our ability to promote children's learning in the most effective way, we are forced from April 2015 to follow the Education Minister's idea of reducing the number of staff we have working at each session.

This is because from this date we will be expected to pay every practitioner a Living Wage rather than our current practice which is to pay slightly above Minimum Wage. Given that Government funding is already somewhat less than our hourly costs in providing your child's free entitlement, we find ourselves unable to meet this new requirement without reducing our adult to child ratios in this way.

Yours faithfully,

Harassed Owner/Manager/Chair

PVI Early Years Setting

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The thing that annoys me is that we don't pay badly because we are tight - it's because we can't afford to pay more!! Reducing staff will be highly detrimental to children (and staff), then further down the line they will be wondering why children are under achieving and badly behaved!! Mmm I wonder!!

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The thing that annoys me is that we don't pay badly because we are tight - it's because we can't afford to pay more!! Reducing staff will be highly detrimental to children (and staff), then further down the line they will be wondering why children are under achieving and badly behaved!! Mmm I wonder!!

But then the govt will be able to say all children should go from the womb to the school.

In Birminghams case they have a bill of almost £800million in compensation to pay out to women workers who were underpaid for years compared to men on the same work level, despite the unions warning them. They'll be trying claw some of that back, no living wage = no funding.

I've got the email addresses of all settings in the city and I'm on the exec committee of the PLA (for what its worth!) I'll fight this all the way.

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Now that I've stopped seething (even though Birmingham is not my area) I have been looking at the statutory guidance given to LAs - these two paragraphs stand out:

This document does not provide guidance on how providers operate their private
businesses, including charges for provision over and above a child’s early education
place. Local authorities should not intervene in providers’ private businesses outside of a
child’s early education place.
and
A5.4 Ensure that early education providers are treated in an equitable way whether they
are from the private, voluntary, independent or maintained sectors.
HOWEVER:
Section 9 gives local authorities the power to attach conditions when funding providers of
childcare.
Section 9 of the Childcare 2006 Act reads
9 Arrangements between local authority and childcare providers
(1) This section applies where an English local authority make arrangements with
a person (other than the governing body of a maintained school) for the
provision by that person of childcare in consideration of financial assistance
provided by the authority under the arrangements.
(2) The local authority must exercise their functions with a view to securing that
the provider of the childcare meets any requirements imposed on him by the
arrangements.Childcare Act 2006 (c. 21)
Part 1 — General functions of local authority: England
6
(3) The requirements imposed by the arrangements may, in particular, if any
specified conditions are not satisfied, require the repayment of the whole or
any part of any financial assistance provided by the local authority under the
arrangements.
At this time of night that's as clear as mud!
Guidance doc can be found here:
Childcare Act here:
Maybe all PVIs should opt out of providing the "free" entitlement and then let the government and LAs see how they would meet sufficiency then
post-9650-0-49048600-1399502213_thumb.jpg
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The thing that annoys me is that we don't pay badly because we are tight - it's because we can't afford to pay more!! Reducing staff will be highly detrimental to children (and staff), then further down the line they will be wondering why children are under achieving and badly behaved!! Mmm I wonder!!

There will always be unscrupulous employers, of course but I think we all acknowledge that there is just not enough money in the pot to pay early years practitioners anywhere near what they're worth. I don't usually subscribe to conspiracy theories, but I see a big fat one here. Funding being reduced at one end, costs being increased at the other. None of it under the control of the people actually implementing the Government's policy.

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Maybe all PVIs should opt out of providing the "free" entitlement and then let the government and LAs see how they would meet sufficiency then

Maybe that's the way forward - but it would take collective nerves of steel to do it. Not to mention the level of support from parents it would require to actually work.

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interestingly i could come out of funding and still charge less than some of my competitors in this area....but i think the parents would FEEL they were missing out. Does anyone know of any setting who have done this?

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Maybe that's the way forward - but it would take collective nerves of steel to do it. Not to mention the level of support from parents it would require to actually work.

Like you say HappyMaz I would love to pay my staff loads more but that is just not possible if I want the staffing ratios that I currently have to provide the quality that I believe the children should have under current funding levels. I also thoroughly agree with you about the "collective nerves" - maybe this is where some of our umbrella organisations such as the NDNA and the PSLA need to step up to the plate. Even if providers only withdrew a percentage of funded places or perhaps refused to have funded places for say a collective day of action it would send a message.

Edited to say I am becoming more militant - it is either that or sink with the despair :(

Edited by SueJ
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I don't usually subscribe to conspiracy theories, but I see a big fat one here. Funding being reduced at one end, costs being increased at the other. None of it under the control of the people actually implementing the Government's policy.

No so much fat as morbidly obese :ph34r: It's as clear as day to me where this is all leading :(

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Maybe that's the way forward - but it would take collective nerves of steel to do it. Not to mention the level of support from parents it would require to actually work.

It certainly would take 'collective nerves of steel'.

Interestingly I don't think many parents are aware of how funding works and what a raw deal we get. i did explain it all once to a parent who was 'umming and ahhing' about how/where to use her funded hours - would it be with me or with her childminder - would it be 'better' for me if she used them with me? That led me to explain (nicely :1b ) that if she used them with me I would instantly lose 0.60p per hour for her daughter - she was genuinely shocked and later in the day she emailed to say that she had spoken to her husband and they would like to voluntarily make up the shortfall (pay a top up) - I thanked her but didn't take up her generous offer.

Of course, that is just one example and I know that there would be plenty of parents who simply couldn't pay top up :(

 

Like you say HappyMaz I would love to pay my staff loads more but that is just not possible if I want the staffing ratios that I currently have to provide the quality that I believe the children should have under current funding levels. I also thoroughly agree with you about the "collective nerves" - maybe this is where some of our umbrella organisations such as the NDNA and the PSLA need to step up to the plate. Even if providers only withdrew a percentage of funded places or perhaps refused to have funded places for say a collective day of action it would send a message.

Edited to say I am becoming more militant - it is either that or sink with the despair :(

Well I'm right with you sister!

Sad to say it won't happen though, I'm actually tired of the PSLA they seem to be so 'toothless' in a 'fight' - we Kenters have first hand experience of this :(

I don't have any experience of the NDNA.........

 

Like you say HappyMaz I would love to pay my staff loads more but that is just not possible if I want the staffing ratios that I currently have to provide the quality that I believe the children should have under current funding levels. I also thoroughly agree with you about the "collective nerves" - maybe this is where some of our umbrella organisations such as the NDNA and the PSLA need to step up to the plate. Even if providers only withdrew a percentage of funded places or perhaps refused to have funded places for say a collective day of action it would send a message.

Edited to say I am becoming more militant - it is either that or sink with the despair :(

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Now that I've stopped seething (even though Birmingham is not my area) I have been looking at the statutory guidance given to LAs - these two paragraphs stand out:

This document does not provide guidance on how providers operate their private

businesses, including charges for provision over and above a childs early education

place. Local authorities should not intervene in providers private businesses outside of a

childs early education place.

 

and

 

 

A5.4 Ensure that early education providers are treated in an equitable way whether they

are from the private, voluntary, independent or maintained sectors.

 

HOWEVER:

 

 

Section 9 gives local authorities the power to attach conditions when funding providers of

childcare.

 

Section 9 of the Childcare 2006 Act reads

 

 

9 Arrangements between local authority and childcare providers

(1) This section applies where an English local authority make arrangements with

a person (other than the governing body of a maintained school) for the

provision by that person of childcare in consideration of financial assistance

provided by the authority under the arrangements.

(2) The local authority must exercise their functions with a view to securing that

the provider of the childcare meets any requirements imposed on him by the

arrangements.Childcare Act 2006 (c. 21)

Part 1 General functions of local authority: England

6

(3) The requirements imposed by the arrangements may, in particular, if any

specified conditions are not satisfied, require the repayment of the whole or

any part of any financial assistance provided by the local authority under the

arrangements.

 

At this time of night that's as clear as mud!

 

Guidance doc can be found here:

 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/early-education-and-childcare

 

Childcare Act here:

 

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2006/21/pdfs/ukpga_20060021_en.pdf

 

Maybe all PVIs should opt out of providing the "free" entitlement and then let the government and LAs see how they would meet sufficiency then

 

steam ears anger.jpg

 

I tried quoting the LA guidance at them regarding the CRBs but they pretty much ignored me, despite sending 1 or 2 emails, so I'm none the wiser as to how much I can rely on it. All I could really quote was the bit that says changes to conditions of funding should go to consultation, all they ever said was it had been the previous year but never told me who was asked.
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interestingly i could come out of funding and still charge less than some of my competitors in this area....but i think the parents would FEEL they were missing out. Does anyone know of any setting who have done this?

But presumably this would mean parents would need to pay you for all of the hours they attend, and not just those above the 'free' entitlement?

It has been so long since I dealt with any of this, I'm a little out of touch! :huh:

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But presumably this would mean parents would need to pay you for all of the hours they attend, and not just those above the 'free' entitlement?

It has been so long since I dealt with any of this, I'm a little out of touch! :huh:

yes they would so for those who ONLY have their free hours it would be a big jump! but for those who pay for some of the settings fees round here for full days we could still be cheaper (local full day £57...our equivalent would work out around £48.00 for the same hours)

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Guest sn0wdr0p

£57.00! :o:o:o:o I charge £30.00 a day (the going rate round here sadly so can't put fees up) I could pay all my staff the living wage if I charged that.

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£57.00! :o:o:o:o I charge £30.00 a day (the going rate round here sadly so can't put fees up) I could pay all my staff the living wage if I charged that.

£57 is for a well known chain of nurseries around here...but we are in a very expensive area !

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Oh it would be nice to think so :) The reply from the council when I asked off it would be going to consultation was rather terse '...yes, as per response given and included in the article'.

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