News for out of school clubs

National Living Wage to rise by 6.2% in April
The national living wage is to rise by 6.2% in what the government says is 'the biggest cash increase ever'. The rise is more than four times the rate of inflation and takes hourly pay for people over 25 to £8.72 from April. read more
31 December 2019, BBC News

Labour promises to scrap Ofsted
With a view to the anticipated general election, Labour has announced that it would scrap Ofsted and replace it with a ‘two-phase’ inspection system, under which schools and childcare providers would be subjected to regular ‘health checks’ led by local authorities. read more
23 September 2019, Nursery World

Publication of a Manifesto for Play
Also with a view to a forthcoming general election, a manifesto calling for greater investment and commitment to children's play in England has been published by Play England, the Playwork Foundation and the International Play Association England. read more
23 September 2019, Children and Young People Now

DfE launches consultation on increasing registration fees
The DfE has just launched a consultation on increasing the Ofsted registration fee for settings on the Early Years Register, and on changing the fee structure. The consultation runs from today until 9 October. read more
18 July 2019, Department for Education

Families on Universal Credit falling into debt in school holidays
Families on universal credit are being plunged into debt because of increased childcare and food costs during school holidays, parents have told a committee of MPs as they appealed for help to manage the extra costs. read more
3 July 2019, The Guardian

Ofsted publishes new Early Years and Childcare Inspection Handbook
Ofsted has published the latest version of the Early Years Inspection Handbook in the middle of May. This guidance will be used by Ofsted inspectors for all inspections of settings on the Early Years Register, including out of school clubs, from September 2019. read more
14 May 2019, Ofsted

Concern over change to Ofsted appeals process
Early years settings have raised concerns about changes to the way Ofsted deals with the internal objections process when a decision is made to cancel a provider’s registration. read more
28 April 2019, Nursery World

Families face rising tide of childcare costs as prices rise again
Parents now pay an average of £127 per week, or over £6,600 per year, for just a part time nursery place, according to new research from Coram Family and Childcare. The Childcare Survey 2019 – the 19th annual survey – finds prices have risen by 3 per cent in the last year. read more
28 February 2019, Coram Family and Childcare

Ofsted launches consultation on how it inspects from Early Years to further education
Ofsted has launched a consultation on plans to change the way it inspects early years settings, schools and further education and skills providers. The aim is to shift the focus of inspection towards what children learn in the curriculum, rather than performance data. read more
16 January 2019, Nursery World

Government announces £9 million for holiday clubs
The DfE has announced a programme to deliver free meals and activities to 'thousands' of disadvantaged children over the 2019 summer holidays. The scheme follows on from the £2 million pilot programme in the summer of 2018. The holiday clubs will be particularly targeted at children eligible for free school meals (FSM), and will run in nine local authority areas around the country. read more
21 December 2018, Department for Education

Thousands more school children receiving a nutritious breakfast
Thousands more children across the country are now getting a healthy and nutritious start to the day at a new or improved school breakfast club, according to the Children and Families Minister Nadhim Zahawi. This follows the investment of up to £26 million for two leading charities - Magic Breakfast and Family Action - to run clubs to improve breakfast for pupils in more than 1,700 schools in deprived areas by 2020. read more
2 November 2018, Department for Education

Childcare and Early Years providers survey
The DfE has published its bi-annual survey of childcare and early years providers in England. The survey examines the number of different types of provider, number of places, staff qualifications, occupancy and fees. This latest survey shows that the number of providers in England reduced from 90,300 to 81,500 over the two-year period – representing a loss of 8,800 providers. read more
1 November 2018, Department for Education

Free holiday activities and meals for disadvantaged children
The DfE has announced that a series of projects, backed by £2million of government funding, will be run across the country including the North East, Birmingham and London, providing activities such as free football classes, play sessions and cooking classes. These projects, running across the summer, will also provide free meals for the most disadvantaged families who may rely on the Free School Meals they receive during term time. read more
27 July 2018, Department for Education

Survey finds cost of holiday childcare has increased
For many British parents, the impending holidays can mean an average bill of £133.34 a week for full-time holiday childcare for one child. This figure has been produced by the Family and Childcare Trust which surveyed local councils across England, Scotland and Wales about the cost of holiday childcare provision. read more
18 July 2018, BBC News

Nursery group closed due to safeguarding concerns about owner's partner
Four nurseries in Devon are to be closed, leaving more than 400 children without childcare and 100 members of staff without jobs. Ofsted is cancelling the registration of the four settings because the owner and manager employed her partner, who had a criminal record for battery and theft as well as a caution for willful neglect, as operations manager at the nurseries. read more
16 April 2018, Nursery World

Under-funded breakfast clubs to receive £26 million boost
The Government has announced schools in some of the country’s most disadvantaged areas will receive £26m in order to boost breakfast clubs after warnings of underfunding. The charities Family Action and Magic Breakfast will run the morning clubs. read more
19 March 2018, LocalGov

Opposition parties win childcare voucher extension
The scrapping of childcare vouchers has been delayed, after Labour forced a vote on the issue in the House of Commons yesterday. During the debate, education secretary Damien Hinds announced that the scheme would be kept open to new entrants for another six months. It was supposed to close on 6 April. read more
14 March 2018, Nursery World

Extending tax-free childcare to older children delayed to 2018
Plans for the full rollout of tax-free childcare have been delayed until March 2018. The scheme was supposed to cover all children under 12 by the end of 2017, but 6 year olds won't be covered until 24 November and the remaining children will be covered in age order with all expected to be included by March next year. The announcement follows many reports of problems in using the online system by parents and providers. read more
15 November 2017, BBC

DfE to extend school breakfast scheme
The Department for Education has announced an expansion of its breakfast club programme to support disadvantaged children. The £10 million a year scheme to expand the provision in up to 1,600 schools will focus on supporting disadvantaged pupils, families, schools and areas. read more
1 October 2017, Nursery World

Cost of Tories' free breakfasts could treble
Giving a free breakfast to every primary school child in England could cost more than treble the £60m the Tory party set aside for it, academics say. Experts analysing the plans re-costed them at between £180m and £400m, depending on how many pupils take them. read more
25 May 2017, BBC

Tax-free childcare runs into technical problems
Two weeks after its launch, both childcare providers and parents are experiencing difficulties with the Tax-Free Childcare (TFC) scheme. A number of providers have reported not being able to sign up to TFC, whilst others have not received payments and some parents have not been able to log into their accounts or make payments. read more
15 May 2017, Nursery World

Sector outraged over claims that many childcare providers are breaking minimum wage rules
New research has attracted criticism from the sector for claiming that one in ten practitioners are being paid less than the National Living Wage by childcare providers. However, the research is based upon data from a DfE survey which was carried out between March 2016, the month before the National Living Wage was introduced on 1 April, and when the legal minimum was £6.70 per hour, and July 2016. read more
17 March 2017, Nursery World

Dept for Education publishes new version of EYFS
The Department for Education has today published a new version of the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage. This will supersede the current version of the Statutory Framework (which was issued in 2014) on 3 April this year. read more
3 March 2017, Department for Education

Dept for Education relaxes GCSE requirements for Level 3 staff
The Department for Education has just published its new Early Years Workforce Strategy in which it announces that its requirement for staff to hold a grade C in Maths and English at GCSE in order to counted as qualified staff is to be relaxed from 3 April this year. read more
3 March 2017, Department for Education

Breakfast clubs are a 'lifeline' to working parents
A survey by breakfast club provider Kellogg’s has found that more than a quarter (27 per cent) of working parents believe that without access to a breakfast club they or their partner would need to give up work. read more
17 January 2017, Nursery World

£500,000 to fund school holiday lunch and fun clubs in Wales
Funding of £500,000 will go to summer holiday school lunch and fun clubs, the Welsh education secretary has said. The money will be offered to councils in the most deprived parts of Wales to help provide play schemes and meals over the summer break. read more
3 January 2017, BBC News