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Lib Dems pledge to triple early years pupil premium and offer 15-hours to all two-year-olds
OnMay 17, 2017
Liberal Democrats plan to support disadvantaged three- and four-year-olds with £1,000 a year per child
The Liberal Democrats have pledged to increase the early years pupil premium (EYPP) and extend the 15-hours childcare offer to all two-year-olds in their latest manifesto. The party has also promised to prioritise funded childcare for working families with children aged nine months- to two-years old, and aims to eventually extend the 30-hour offer to all two- to four-year-olds.
The party has promised to triple the EYPP from around £300 per pupil per year to £1,000. The EYPP is additional funding given to early years settings to help improve education for disadvantaged three- and four-year-olds.
The Liberal Democrats say that the pledges will help parents return to work while also helping children “start school confident, happy and ready to learn”. The manifesto also promises to “ensure that this provision is fully funded at sustainable levels”.
The Alliance has welcomed the pledge to increase the EYPP, which would help close the gap between the EYPP and the primary school pupil premium. Neil Leitch, chief executive at the Alliance, said: “Supporting children from more disadvantaged backgrounds is a vital part of early years provision, but clearly providers are limited in what they can do with £300 per child per year.”
However, he added that the party had failed to make clear how the party’s many childcare promises would be funded. He said: “The sector has been on the receiving end of enough underfunded ‘free childcare’ policies. Without more detail on how these pledges will be funded, many providers will remain rightly sceptical about these latest promises.”