The labour party conference in Brighton today will hear from Ed Balls, who will tell delegates about the party’s plans to expand free childcare for three and four-year-olds to 25 hours per week for working parents if they win the next election.

He will tell delegates that he would raise the free childcare limit from 15 hours per week to 25 hours.

“For the first time, parents will be able to work part-time without having to worry about the cost of childcare,”

The 10 extra hours of free childcare would be available to households with three and four-year-old children, where all adults are employed.  This means single-parent households where that parent is in work, or couple households with both adults in work.  The current 15 hours will still be available to all 3 and 4 year olds.

In addition, Labour has already announced a Primary Childcare Guarantee for families with school-age children.

This will give all parents of primary school children the guarantee of access to childcare through their school from 8am to 6pm, although parents will still have to pay for the childcare through state-funded vouchers or their own money.

But by ensuring schools remain open and willing to look after children from 8am to 6pm, parents can commit to working longer hours.

Stephen twigg said ‘David Cameron scrapped Labour’s programme to support before and after-school clubs, leaving many parents struggling to juggle work and family life.

‘If we want an economy that works for working people, we must support parents trying to balance these pressures.’

The Primary Childcare Guarantee will be written into law if Labour wins the 2015 election.

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