Closed petition Offer Welsh working parents the same financial support for childcare as England

In England from April 24 all working parents of 2 year olds get 15 hours free childcare. From September 24 this will be extended to parents of 9 months old +. From September 25 the free hours will be extended to 30.

In comparison Wales will take until September 25 to provide 12.5 hours to all 2 year olds. With no plan in place for 9 months + or increasing the hours to 15 or 30.

We’re in a cost of living crisis where the Welsh Gov have the ability to support working parents but aren’t.

More details

The Welsh Government are choosing not to roll out the 12.5 hours to 2 year olds like the current 30 hours free childcare for 3 year olds scheme. Instead they’re getting Flying Start to lead. This is more complicated because it means you have to wait for your postcode to be eligible rather than it being universal. And childcare providers have to register with Flying Start before they can receive the 12.5 hours.

The thinking behind this is that Flying Start will make childcare providers provide higher quality care to produce better outcomes for all children. But all registered childcare providers have regular inspections and the outcomes are available online, so you can find out about the quality before applying to the setting.
Additionally children from “disadvantaged” areas of Wales that need it have always been covered by Flying Start and therefore eligible for the childcare offer when 2 to help improve their outcomes.

This petition is now under consideration by the Petitions Committee

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The Senedd debated this topic

This topic was debated on 31 January 2024

Watch the petition ‘Offer Welsh working parents the same financial support for childcare as England’ being debated

The petition was debated by the Senedd in Plenary on 31 January 2024.