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Early years childcare is in crisis. Parents face spiralling costs and nurseries are forced to put up fees or close their doors due to rising bills, lack of staff and inadequate government funding for “free” hours.
Better funded and more accessible childcare would offer significant social and economic benefits for families and wider society, so why is the cost of early years provision higher in the UK than most of the world? What does this say about how we value care in our society, and what can the government do about it?
Many childcare reforms suggested by Liz Truss have already been shelved and the early years sector wasn’t mentioned by Rishi Sunak in his January ‘priorities’ speech. Can Jeremy Hunt’s proposals in the latest budget deliver?
editor and invited experts
News Editor, Tortoise
CEO, Early Years Alliance