Affordable quality: new approaches to childcare

Document type
Truss, Elizabeth
Date of publication
1 May 2012
Children and Young People, Families
Social welfare
Material type

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The British childcare system needs to deliver better value for money. The British government spends more on pre-school support than the governments of Germany, France and the Netherlands, and yet childcare costs for British families are amongst the highest in Europe. Supply is failing to keep up with demand.

This report recommends that the UK adopts an agency structure similar to the childminder or 'host parent' agencies found in the Netherlands. An accompanying measure would be to allow nurseries and children's centres to apply for academy status so that they are free from local authority control.

A structure based on academies and agencies - and regulated through Ofsted - would lead to an increase in availability of flexible childcare and an end to spiralling costs.

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