‘Insight into wraparound childcare’, published by the charity Coram Family and Childcare, explores the views of parents, sector experts and local authorities on current provision of before and after-school childcare.
The research follows the Budget 2023 announcement of £289 million over two years, from September 2024, to enable local authorities to support the expansion of wraparound childcare to all primary school-aged children.
The report highlights problems with making sure parents have access to childcare that meets their needs, staff recruitment, the complexity of accurately mapping local supply and demand, and the significant funding pressures facing local authorities.
Cllr Louise Gittins, Chair of the LGA’s Children and Young People Board, said: “Local authorities work hard to ensure this is a success and want to continue to work closely with central government to make improvements to the programme. However, they are under significant pressures and are having to target their teams in areas that need immediate focus, meaning some local areas have not been able to prioritise wraparound care.
“The shortages highlighted in the report reflect the wider complications of this area and the lack of central focus on wraparound care.
“Despite the scheme being announced last April, there has only recently been further information from the Government on how local authorities should focus more widely on this, as well as the funding required to support local authorities to implement this programme.
“It is vital that local authorities have long-term, sustainable funding to enable them to support providers, schools and families to deliver and access wraparound provision.”