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Commission on Childcare

As I sit here, glued to my sofa watching the Olympics, a reminder in my calendar pops up continuously to complete the response for the commission on childcare! My response is to dismiss it (manana, manana!)  as I know that I have until the end of August to complete. But it is one task that I will tackle as if I’m going for a gold medal because childcare for working parents is an issue that is very dear to my heart; both on a personal level, as a single working parent, (I have used every type of childcare over the years) and on a professional level, working passionately with the childcare sector both nationally and internationally.


So what is the commission on childcare? It is a joint concept led by the Department of Education and the Department for Work and Pensions They have asked anyone with an interest to complete a consultation response and the three main areas of focus are:

  •  ways to encourage out of hours provision, so that parents are able to access care for their child when they need it;
  • identifying any regulation that is not needed to ensure safety or quality; and
  • how childcare helps to get parents into work and out of poverty.

 https://www.education.gov.uk/aboutdfe/departmentalinformation/consultations/a00211976/commission-on-childcare  Penny Webb, a childminder from Worcestershire has kindly shared her response. http://pennysplacechildminding.com/2012/07/29/commission-on-childcare-call-for-evidence-example-response/ In addition, Penny has also responded to Michael Gove’s letter to Sir Michael Wilshaw’s letter. http://pennysplacechildminding.com/2012/08/07/7th-august-my-thoughts-on-gove-comments-about-deregulation/ … It is vital that as many individuals as possible complete this response. I am strongly in favour of keeping quality high on the agenda of childcare. We have worked so hard over the years to maintain and improve on quality. We only have to look at the Nutbrown Review http://media.education.gov.uk/MediaFiles/A/0/9/%7BA098ADE7-BA9A-4E18-8802-D8D4B060858D%7DNUTBROWN%20FINAL%20REPORT%20-%20final.pdf  and EPPE research to recognise that quality does make a difference to children’s outcomes. I recently shared a few solutions: http://laurachildcare.wordpress.com/2012/06/19/simple-solutions/ . If the Government truly want children to be ‘school ready’ it is VITAL that children, irrespective of the setting they attend, receive exceptional care and education and are given the finest opportunities (to quote my 14 year old son: “like a three star Michelin Restaurant!”) in their early years.  Well, yes! Aim high!  We cannot short change children in their early years. Every child, in order that they are given the spark to achieve, must be given the foundations to learn within their early years, regardless of their background. Therefore we MUST not remove standards but continue to ENHANCE standards. When completing my response, I will have at the forefront of my mind the Olympics mantra ‘Inspiring a Generation’.

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  • psw260259

    First thank you for the links to my blog and my comments Laura.

    I can’t help thinking that the timing of this commission was on purpose – or maybe the government have forgotten about the Olympics, the school holidays,, childcare settings either shut for the holidays or extra busy with holiday clubs and school age children – oh and the fact that when childcare practitioners take their own holiday from work – the last thing on their mind will be completing the response on the commission on childcare.

    However we must keep on ‘plugging’ this and do our best to get as many as possible to respond.

    Your last sentence taken from the Olympics – ‘Inspiring a generation’ – I hope that childcare practitioners will be able to continue to do this although at the moment as someone from a more mature generation – the government are failing to inspire me at the moment. I have jumped through hoops, I have taken on board the latest research into child development (including brain development – which I am sure the government cannot have read properly) I have achieved the highest grade from Ofsted and I continually reflect on my practice and undertake CPD – only to be told (in as many words) – that the government is going to ‘bin’ all this.

    Please can everyone complete the response on the commission on childcare – and can everyone please try to get the important points across – despite the closed questions

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