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- What is childcare sufficiency?
Section 6 of the Childcare Act 2006 requires local authorities to ensure there is sufficient childcare to meet the needs of parents and carers with children aged up to 14 years old (or up to 18 years old for disabled children and children with additional needs) to enable them to take up or remain in work, or undertake training that could assist them to obtain work.
Childcare sufficiency is more than just making sure there is ‘enough’ childcare. It is also about:
- making sure that the childcare is available, accessible and affordable so that parents have the opportunity to use childcare in their area
- making sure it is of good quality so that it benefits the child
- and providing parents with a choice of childcare so they can choose the childcare that meets their needs.
- Why do we complete a childcare sufficiency assessment?
Section 11 of the Childcare Act 2006, requires local authorities to assess the sufficiency of childcare in their area.
Under the Department for Education’s (DfE) Early Education and Childcare: Statutory Guidance for Local Authorities, Devon County Council should report annually to elected council members on how they are meeting their duty to secure sufficient childcare and make this report available and accessible to parents. This guidance also sets out what should be included in this report.
- Childcare sufficiency hot spots?
Childcare sufficiency hot spot meetings take place twice a year, where key officers in the local authority discuss what provision there is in each learning community and agree plans to ensure sufficient early years and childcare for children under the age of five.
The childcare sufficiency hot spots identified at the last meetings in March 2015 can be found in the Childcare sufficiency hot spots document.
For further information please contact Gemma Cockerham (Childcare Audit Analyst) on 01392 381018 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Who should parents contact if they cannot find childcare?
If you are a parent, unable to find suitable childcare, please contact the DISC brokerage service who will be able to help you. It is important that you let us know so that it can aid planning. Demand for childcare is the amount of childcare parents require across Devon and is key to determining what is ‘sufficient’. In Devon, we monitor the enquiries to DISC from parents looking for childcare to determine where there is demand. Therefore, if you are a parent unable to find suitable childcare, it is important that you report this back to Devon County Council. Please complete a feedback form below:
- Annual survey of providers
An annual survey is emailed out to all early years and childcare providers once a year in the spring term to gather vital information on the settings capacity to inform our sufficiency duty. This survey is pre-populated and we would appreciate your time in completing it. Look out for the email in your inbox. More information information and analysis of the annual survey of providers 2015 can be found on the Annual survey of providers page.
- New and developing childcare businesses
Are you thinking of developing a new early years and childcare business or expanding your current business? Are you unsure where to start? Please visit our New and developing early years and childcare businesses page for more information.
- Early Years Entitlement complaints procedure
If you are not satisfied that your child has received their free place or are not satisfied with any aspect of the way in which you have received it please tell us by going to our complaints contact page
Alternatively you can contact us:
Phone: 01392 385530
Early Years and Childcare Service
Room 170, County Hall
- Childcare Sufficiency Annual Reports
The Childcare Sufficiency Assessment Annual Reports set out to demonstrate how Devon County Council is meeting its duty to secure sufficient childcare and the actions for the year ahead.
The latest Childcare Sufficiency Assessment Annual Report for 2013/14 has now been published.
- Further information