202,000 children access 30 hours during the Autumn term

 

The Department for Education released its first set of statistics for the first term of extended funded childcare in England.

According to their data, some of which relies on estimates from local authorities:

  • 202,783 children were in a 30 hours place 
  • 224,885 eligibility codes issued to parents for the autumn term
  • 210,863 (94 per cent) were validated by providers

But for the spring term starting in January:

  • 305,691 codes have been issued in total
  • So far only 74% have been validated (224,988)

Read the full report here

Purnima Tanuku OBE, Chief Executive of NDNA, said: “We are unsure how accurate the figures are, with almost half based on estimates, so hope to get clarity in due course. If the scheme is supporting more than 202,000 children already, that is good news.

“According to these figures, 305,691 children have been issued codes for the January term, putting huge pressure on providers who are already stretched by delivering this offer which is underfunded by central government. Local authorities will need to support the early years sector to deliver this significant increase in places.

“We are also concerned that only 74% of the new codes have been validated by providers. This could be a sign that nurseries are restricting the amount of 30 hour places they can offer. Parents could be struggling to get their child a place in a local nursery. 

“The pressure on providers is likely to increase again when a further cohort of children tries to join for the summer term. We will be carrying out our own research shortly to establish exactly what is happening on the frontline.”