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Nef Code Of Practice 2006


Steve
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The 2006 Code of Practice for provision of free nursery education for 3 - 5 year olds is now available - you can read/download it here.

 

Haven't had time to read it yet, but it's usually worth looking over as it gives guidance to LEAs on the way they should allocate their funding. :)

 

Comes into effect from April 1st.

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Thanks for the link Steve, our local LEA have only just received info themselves, which has left it quite late for them to inform us of their delegated conditions re: Educational Funding. Hopefully (when I read it) I shall be more informed as to what their conditions may be.

The delay has made it difficult for me to forward budget for next term.

 

Peggy

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Guest alisonjayne

Thanks for the link Steve, we received information from Our LEA yesterday!!

Have just ordered my own copy

cheers

Ali

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Had a meeting friday before last and our LEA gave us photocopy then of it. Good bedtime reading. although one or two points we have brought up, especially being able to use funding over a lunchtime period as long as it is planned and for a reason (10.3 in the code of practice) Will let everyone know if our LEA decides to say yes on that one. For me it means I will be able to have 2 sessions a day as there doesn't need to be a gap of an hour.

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I believe all LEAs have to provide funding for 38 weeks. In our area, if providers are not open yet for all 38 weeks, they will be paid on a pro-rata basis for the number of weeks they are open. Our LEA are aiming for all providers to be offering 38 weeks a year by April 2007.

 

Deb

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The private day nursery where I work is totally confused with where the government is coming from on this one, trying to fit everyone into one size fits all fees set up. There must be other settings that are going to struggle with such short notice of change of charging, a smaller fee to be paid by government, no topping up allowed, who came up with this idea.

This is how it put: "If the amount of funding is less than a provider would normally charge, they may not require the balance or any top-up payment from the parents. To do so would undermine the principle that the place is free." Staff are bound to suffer, what other corners can be cut? Very worried.

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So if the funding is £5 for 2.5 hrs and the setting normally charges £6 they cant have the £1 difference from parents? Is that right and if it is, has it always been like that? We always charged less than the funding anyway, with the extra being used for equipment and daily resources and to off set the balance that we didnt get when the 33 weeks were up. By not charging for the other 6 weeks we lost around £1500 per year on 12 children. But if the funding covers 38 weeks now surely you should be able to ask for any difference, what are the government hoping to achieve, a worse paid work force?

I do know that from April next year the funding will be for 3 hr sessions, but I dont know if they will be voluntary or compulsory hours.

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For the last 15 months or so, we have charged a top-up to cover the 5 weeks not covered by the NEG.

 

From April, we will also charge a top-up for services we provide extra to the 2 1/2 hours paid by the NEG (in our area it's going to be £8.20 per 2 1/2 hours).

 

So we will charge £2.50 for lunch club.

 

I am hoping we can charge for the extra 1/4 hour we are open but am checking this with SureStart. Reading the Code of Practice, it would seem that we cannot charge funded children more than we charge non-funded children.

 

So if we charge non funded children £7.00 for 2 3/4 hours, that equates to 64 p per 1/4 hour (boo! just checking you're still awake). So as I see it, we can charge funded children 64 p for that extra 1/4 hour. This may seem a bit picky but in the summer term alone that would give us an income of over £600 which is not to be sniffed at. Will let you know what SureStart say.

 

At a meeting I attended in the Autumn term regarding these changes, charging a top-up for the extra service we provide, was encouraged by our local Surestart 'as parents are used to paying one'.

 

Was hoping to use the £8.20 to ascertain the hourly rate but alas looks like we cannot. Will just have to put the non-funded fees up next year!! Our costs are increasing all the time, we don't charge for the nutritious snack we provide, maybe that's something we would have to start doing, but it would obviously have to apply to all children.

 

Is there anything you can charge for that you provide extra?

 

Deb

Edited by Deb
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According to the Code of Practice, the Government intends to increase the funding to 3 hours from 2010, although our local SureStart thought that it would probably happen in 2008, guess we'll have to wait and see about that one.

 

 

Our LEA is providing funding for 38 weeks from April this year. They are aiming for all providers to be offering 38 weeks from April, 2007, and providers offering less than 38 weeks from April will be paid on a pro rata basis for the number of weeks they are open.

 

Deb

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It has always been that you couldn't charge extra for the two and a half hours funded places-this is why so many day nurseries have found it especially difficult as their fees were more than £7 or so that the grant gave. Over and above those 2 1/2 hours then fees can be charged.

Most pre-schools and playgroups would probably charge less than the grant for the education sessions-I know we do but have slowly crept up to be almost there. So it hasn't really affected this sector. Day nurseries must be very worried about the extra hours that are being added-especially if the government doesn't come up with a substantial rise in the grant paid and if, like Stockport, local authorities top slice the money for whatever they see fit.

I had also heard that the money was not necessarily going to be ring fenced which could prove to be a major problem.

Linda

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A couple of years or so ago when the education grant was given directly to local government, there was talk that councils would be able to set their own level of funding. Yours is £8.20 Deb, is everyones? I dont have dealings with it anymore so I'm not sure. I do know that under the new Every child matters, birth to 19 (with SEN I believe) Birmingham are putting all the money for children in a pot and allocating it to various groups as they apply. So whereas there was money allocated for under 5's and money for teen's etc, now it's all lumped together.

At playgroup we charged less than the grant for a session but as we opened for 6 weeks longer than the grant we used the extra to cover those sessions but still at a loss of around £1200 on 12 children over the year. PLA advised that we should charge top up fees but the committee wouldnt. Basically if it came to the point where the grant was affecting your income to the extent that wages/rent was in danger of not being paid, you'd have to charge, regardless of what government said, you'd just have to dress it up as something else. So long as you were totally honest with your parents it's what I'd do. There's just too much silliness in this game now. :D

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