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Pre-school Learning Alliance 30 hours report


FSFRebecca
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The PLA has released it's report following the survey of providers made in March. The results make for stark reading, yet reflect the discussions that have been held on FSF over the last few months.

Neil Leitch, chief executive of PLA, has today been speaking to the media about the report. He was live on the Victoria Derbyshire programme this morning:

 

This links to the BBC iplayer programme, (the link will be live for 29 days)

 

The PLA report can be accessed from this link: Less than half of providers plan to offer 30-hours, survey suggests

 

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Thanks Rebecca - I saw this live this morning (whilst indulging in a spot of holiday sofa surfing) - certainly worth a look for those not lucky enough to have been lounging about! :1b

 

Holiday??? Have you finished for Easter, in Kent Sunnyday?

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Did anyone else think the lady who had been trialling and said it worked well was actually just charging £1 hour top-up fee ? I know it said to cover extras but it still sounded like a blanket hourly top up.

 

 

That's pretty much what I will be doing, although my hourly charge is 80p. The hourly charge needs to be stated clearly and openly and explained what you are charging for. We are calling it 'enhanced provision' and have a list of things that we do above and beyond 'basic entitlement' such as visitors (zoolab etc), hot cooked lunch, tea, snack, supernumerary staff member available everyday, SendCo with allocated time for the role etc etc etc. Parents then choose if they want to access the 'enhanced provision' and they sign a contract to say they understand how their funded hours are used and what their enhanced provision charge covers and that they agree with this. If they want 'basic entitlement' only I am only offering this for sessions between 1pm-4pm and only if I have space. This will be from September when the 1140hrs kicks in (I don't call it '30hrs' because it isn't for all-year-round nurseries like mine.) So far every parent I've explained it to in detail is perfectly happy because it still means a huge saving on their bill. I sent out the explanation to all parents last week and haven't had anyone question it yet.

The important thing from a compliance point of view is that parents know exactly what they are paying for, where their 'free' hours are being used and sign to agree.

Hope that's helped a few people!

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Did anyone else think the lady who had been trialling and said it worked well was actually just charging £1 hour top-up fee ? I know it said to cover extras but it still sounded like a blanket hourly top up.

 

 

...and whatever you do don't call it a 'top up'!!!

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I like your thinking, we've had to kick off now with no time to really think about it, though no too much of a problem at the moment as we have no places left anyway, my only worry is what will happen if someone says they aren't paying the 'enhanced' payment, will you stop them accessing the zoo lab or whatever or only plan visitors/visitors during your 'enhanced' provision hours ? And if you don't parents will soon find out some are and aren't paying for those extras :-/ I could see this working for us if we made enhanced hours the afternoon as we do organise a lot more of this type activity in the pm due to having older children.

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I like your thinking, we've had to kick off now with no time to really think about it, though no too much of a problem at the moment as we have no places left anyway, my only worry is what will happen if someone says they aren't paying the 'enhanced' payment, will you stop them accessing the zoo lab or whatever or only plan visitors/visitors during your 'enhanced' provision hours ? And if you don't parents will soon find out some are and aren't paying for those extras :-/ I could see this working for us if we made enhanced hours the afternoon as we do organise a lot more of this type activity in the pm due to having older children.

 

 

Then they have to access the 'Fully Funded' session that you've allocated. For me, that's our 1pm-4pm slot because afternoons are always quieter and there are no meals between these times. It is stated clearly that this is 'subject to availability' so if there isn't any space then they simply can't attend unfortunately. If I had a visitor or trip booked for during a 'fully funded' session I would speak directly to the parent and make a one off charge.

The thing to remember is that it is up to your local authority to ensure that there is every kind of provision in your area, but it is not up to you to BE every type of provision. I am an all-year-round, 7:30-6pm nursery and am perfect for working parents for whom the extended government entitlement works brilliantly to reduce their childcare bill. Anyone who wants completely free childcare can choose from at least two other playgroups in our village alone, or one of 5 childminders. I have spoken to parents a few times who say 'but I want them to come to your because you're better but I can't afford it and I want to only use my 15hrs, 5hrs a day, term-time.' To be brutal, we are better because of all the 'enhanced provision' and that is why we are more expensive and why I can't provide 'free' childcare.

I don't mind offering the 1pm-4pm slots if there's space as t's obviously better for me to get the county council rate per hour for those hours rather than have them empty.

 

Phew...That sounded like a bit of a rant, but it is what it is and I am determined that my business will not be forced to close because of an ill thought out governmental decision...

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