Purnima Tanuku OBE, Chief Executive of NDNA said: “This Ofsted briefing really does show how hard early years providers and their practitioners have been working to get children back into their settings so they can continue their learning.
“But it also echoes ours and the sectors’ main concerns about low attendance numbers and the impact of that on children’s development and the childcare businesses’ sustainability. Even where children are returning, they may be coming in fewer hours than previously.
“Those most affected are children from deprived backgrounds including funded two year olds who need high quality early education and care most of all to thrive and reach their full potential.
“Nurseries need assurance from the Government now that, due to lower numbers of children than expected, they must be funded at January 2019 figures rather than the actual head count in 2021. This arrangement for funding from next month must be announced as soon as possible for providers to be able to plan.
“NDNA is proud to be supporting a sector which, despite these challenging issues, is working wonders to educate children adversely affected by the pandemic, with many training their staff in new areas to be able to support children as effectively as possible. This must be recognised and their crucial work safeguarded.”
Ofsted chief inspector Amanda Spielman said: “Faced with all of these pressures, the education and social care sectors are showing considerable resilience and creativity to provide children and learners with the best experience they can. And all of this is being done against the most challenging backdrop for staff in recent times. I would like to record my appreciation for everyone working in education and social care – from childminders and social workers to teachers and college tutors.”
Read the evidence here.