Experts warn over lack of childcare spaces this summer

Schools may need to open this summer after research from a children's charity found there was only one childcare space for every 15 kids across the UK.

Using schools for childcare 'just makes sense'

Using school facilities during the summer holidays as a means of childcare "just makes sense" for a lot of parents, the head of a children's charity told Good Morning Britain.

Chief executive of 4Children Anne Longfield said it was something parents could rely on.

It's not school as we know it. It's not formal classroom school. It's about taking part of the school and transforming it into a great place to be.

– Anne Longfield

Govt: Over 116,000 'already accessing free childcare'

Some 116,000 youngsters are already using the 15 hours of free childcare they are entitled to from the Government, a Department of Education spokesman said.

The DfE rebuffed claims more needed to be done to tackle growing demand and said:

Over 116,000 eligible children are already accessing 15 hours of free childcare a week and we have now extended this to a further 240,000 two year olds from September.

We have also introduced tax free childcare - up to £2,000 per child and for working families on the lowest incomes up to 85% of childcare costs are to be met under universal credit.

We are encouraging new childcare providers to enter the system, while cutting red tape for current ones and making it easier for school nurseries to open from 8-6, with over 800,000 places in schools, to help ensure parents can have what they want.

– Department of Education spokesman

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Charity warns of 'one childcare place for every 15 kids'

A childcare crisis is looming this summer, with only one place for every 15 kids across the UK, a charity has found.

Read: 1.9m grandparents cut working hours 'to provide childcare'

Childcare
High demand is expected for childcare places this summer. Credit: PA

4Children wants schools to open across the summer holidays so youngsters have somewhere safe to go while their parents are at work.

The children's and family charity say there are just 450,000 places in holiday clubs or with childminders available to the 6.8million children aged four and 14-years-old. This equates to one place for every 15 children.

4Children also wanted to see the Government build on free entitlements for two, three and four-year-olds, so older children can access affordable, high quality childcare from the end of parental leave until school.

Read: Clegg calls for end to workplace inequality