It may be harder, however, for early years providers to enjoy a seasonal break and forget about the challenges of funding for the 30-hour offer.
There’s a lot of information released by the Government about the funding review to be digested along with the Christmas pudding. Topline figures such as £4.88 per hour don’t mean much in themselves.
So take the time to read Ceeda’s analysis of the figures on pages 12-13. Dr Jo Verrill looks at what the average rate that providers will receive is likely to be, for both three- and four-year-olds and two-year-olds, and she poses some very pertinent questions about the Review of Childcare Costs report. Why does this come up with significantly lower estimates than Ceeda’s breakeven forecasts?
We’ve also received quite a few comments about the report ‘Cost of delivering the early education entitlement’, which was released along with the other funding review reports. This came up with an average 22p surplus per hour for PVI settings providing the entitlement for three- and four-year-olds – somewhat surprising. Surveying only 57 settings across a limited number of local authorities and then scaling this up to a national picture, this report had lots of us scratching our heads about its conclusions.
Still, you can submit yet more evidence to Parliament as the Childcare Bill continues on its way, and there will of course be a consultation early next year. Please try to find some time to have a rest this Christmas as well!