This week the Government announced £100m funding for childcare providers in England to offer free early years education to disadvantaged two-year-olds. However it has emerged that, at the same time, local authorities have had their Early Intervention Grants (EIG) cut.
Liberal Democrat leader, Nick Clegg, announced that the £100m funding comes from the Department for Education’s capital budget.
It has also now emerged that the government plans to hold back £150m from the Early Intervention Grant in 2013/14 and 2014/15 and retain it ‘centrally for future use in funding early intervention and children’s services’.
With childcare providers back under the spotlight, how do you feel about the funding and how it affects your provision?
Government sets out reform of early learning and children’s centres
A new, slimmed down early years curriculum for 0-5s, more focused on making sure children start school ready and able to learn, will be introduced next year under changes set out by Children’s Minister Sarah Teather.
Responding to the Tickell Review of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS), the new framework radically reduces the number of early learning goals from 69 to 17. It also focuses on three prime areas of learning critical to making sure children have the foundations for school, and introduces a progress check for every 2 year old in early education so parents and professionals can be confident children are developing well.
As part of wider reforms to Sure Start children’s centres and early learning, the Government is looking at ways to get parents and communities more involved in running children’s centres. New plans to be consulted on will also make it easier for parents to plan and balance their working lives by making the free entitlement to 15 hours of early learning and childcare more flexible.