The next Government should urgently review the way the budget for early education and childcare - forecast at £6.4 billion - is allocated, to ensure best value for money. The House of Lords Committee on Affordable Childcare believes that the budget should be re-prioritised to help disadvantaged children, as detailed in its report, published today.
The Committee believes that there are three main actions the new Government must take in order to get the best value for its investment:
- re-prioritise spending in early education and childcare to focus on disadvantaged children – better value for money will be achieved by targeting those most likely to benefit;
- ensure that disadvantaged two year-olds access their free early education in settings rated good or outstanding by Ofsted no later than 2020; and
- address the under-funding of free early education places in the Public, Voluntary and Independent (PVI) sector.
The full press notice includes comments from the Chairman, Lord Sutherland of Houndwood.