Out-of-school childcare inadequate

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A Family and Childcare Trust study has found that large areas of the country are not providing enough out-of-school childcare for primary-age children, with 28% of Britain's local councils short of after-school care in their areas.

More than six in ten parents have had to change their working arrangements once their children start school, according to the study.

Sixty-three per cent of parents have had to change the way they work to cope with childcare problems when their children started school, with 12 per cent forced to leave their jobs.

There are also widespread variations in the cost of childcare within regions, which means that families who live in the same area can be hit by vastly different costs for childcare.

Anand Shukla, chief executive of the Family and Childcare Trust, said: "For many working parents, hoping that their childcare struggle ends when their children start school, this damning research shows that unfortunately the opposite is true.

"Far too many parents face a never-ending battle to secure affordable, quality childcare just so that they can go to work to provide for their families.

"The system needs a complete overhaul, but in the meantime local authorities must, with the support of government, implement action plans to tackle the severe lack of childcare for school-age children."

The joint survey with Netmums found that 40 per cent of parents of five- to 11-year-olds found it difficult to find childcare for their children once they start school at the beginning and the end of the school day.

School Leadership Today
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