Search

Suffolk campaigners pledge to continue fight for fairer childcare funding – after council agrees 13p increase

PUBLISHED: 21:49 11 January 2018 | UPDATED: 22:55 11 January 2018

Parents and childcare providers join campaigning Labour councillors before a county council meeting in October 2017. Picture: PAUL GEATER

Parents and childcare providers join campaigning Labour councillors before a county council meeting in October 2017. Picture: PAUL GEATER

Archant

Suffolk childcare providers have welcomed a payment increase – but warned the fight for sustainable funding is not over.

Donna-Marie Row, who owns Yorley Barn Nursery School in Sudbury, and the founder of the Champagne Nurseries on Lemonade Funding Facebook group. Picture: DONNA-MARIE ROW/CHAMPAGNE NURSERIES ON LEMONADE FUNDING Donna-Marie Row, who owns Yorley Barn Nursery School in Sudbury, and the founder of the Champagne Nurseries on Lemonade Funding Facebook group. Picture: DONNA-MARIE ROW/CHAMPAGNE NURSERIES ON LEMONADE FUNDING

Following today’s meeting with the Schools Forum, Suffolk County Council agreed to increase the hourly rate paid to providers from £3.87 to £4 from April.

It followed warnings the current funding model was unsustainable and put nurseries at risk.

Problems arose in September when the Government increased the number of free hours of weekly childcare from 15 to 30. Providers warned the payments from Government did not cover their costs.

In Suffolk, which has seen a reduction in funding for early years provision the deficit for providers is said to have been even greater. Today’s motion to SCC’s Schools Form set to address that deficit.

Donna Row, who runs a Suffolk nursery and leads the Champagne Nurseries, Lemonade Funding campaign, welcomed the decision – but warned more is needed.

“We are delighted – it’s wonderful news,” she said.

“However going forward, with increases in pension contribution and minimum wage, 13p per hour per child is still not good enough.

“We understand the council has budgets of its own but we want to know will Suffolk keep fighting central government for more funding?”

Mrs Row said her group would be lobbying the Government’s new early years minister Nadhim Zahawi - the fourth minister the group has dealt with in two years.

Suffolk Labour’s children’s services spokesman Helen Armitage, who worked with the campaign group, also welcomed the increase but said a “radical review” of funding by central government was needed.

Elfrede Brambley-Crawshaw, spokesman for children’s services for the Liberal Democrat, Green, and Independent groups said nurseries would have closed without the increase - but more money was needed.

Gordon Jones, cabinet member for children’s services said he was pleased to increase the payments despite a reduction in government funding, which meant 96.2% of funding goes straight to providers.

He said the fairer allocation of deprivation and inclusion funding meant money will go to children who need it most.

“We recognise that more needs to be done,” he added “I will continue to lobby the government for fairer funding for children in Suffolk.”

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Coastal Scene visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Coastal Scene staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Coastal Scene account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Other popular content

20 minutes ago

Few of us can imagine what it feels like to be born in a body that you do not recognise as your own.

37 minutes ago

Police have launched an attempted murder investigation after a 17-year-old boy was stabbed in Osborne Street, Colchester, in the early hours of this morning.

56 minutes ago

Witham MP Priti Patel is urging schools in the region to take advantage of the opportunity to visit the infamous Holocaust concentration camp Auschwitz, as part of a nationwide programme to educate pupils of the atrocities.

Nadhim Zahawi, minister in the Department for Education says the Ipswich Opportunity Area plan will give young people in the town to be the best version of themselves.

Local weather

Rain

Rain

max temp: 3°C

min temp: 1°C

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24