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A new Department for Education survey asking parents for their opinions on staff:child ratios has raised concern among the sector that there will be a renewed push for a relaxation.

The free entitlement for the least advantaged two-year-olds is key to unlocking parents' opportunities for learning and employment, as well as supporting children's learning, says James Hempsall

Research interviews began last week with families taking part in one of the largest ever Government-funded studies into early years education.

Barnardo's and Action for Children have lost their contracts to run seven children's centres in Leicester in a council bid to save 1.7m a year.

More than half of parents believe that nurseries should employ more staff to look after nursery age children, research by the Department for Education suggests.

Proposals to make childcare more affordable and increase the provision of out-of-school childcare in schools have been set out today.

The phasing of Universal Credit will have significant implications for the finances of families using nurseries and for nursery staff themselves.

The Old Station Nursery's Henley-on-Thames setting will reduce the cost of childcare from April, which could mean a saving for parents with a child on a part-time place of up to 2,730 a year.

Childcare is now 77 per cent more expensive in real terms than it was ten years ago, according to the latest Annual Childcare Costs Survey.

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