Parents squeezed by rising childcare costs

The annual survey by Coram Family and Childcare has found that parents across Britain are being squeezed by rising childcare costs and a drop in available places.

The charity’s survey of childcare costs found the average price of a part-time childcare place (25 hours) a week for a child aged under two in a nursery is £138.70 across Britain. The average price of 25 hours of childcare a week for a child aged under two by a childminder is £124.41 a week.

The typical full-time price of 50 hours of care a week for a child aged under two in nursery is £269.86 across Britain. With a childminder for a child aged under two it is £237.28 per week.

More than half of local authorities report having enough childcare places available for children under two, at 57 per cent down from 72 per cent in 2021, and only 59 per cent reported having enough childcare available for parents working full-time, down from 68 per cent last year.

Nearly two-thirds of local authorities have seen childcare providers raise their prices and 30 per cent said that providers have increased the number of children looked after by each staff member.

Coram Family and Childcare is urging for a boost to support for childcare by increasing the maximum amount of childcare costs paid under Universal Credit, along with support for upfront costs.

Ellen Broome, managing director of Coram Family and Childcare, said: “Many parents, up and down the country, will be locked out of work or struggle to make ends meet as childcare prices continue to go up and the availability of places goes down. And the more vulnerable children will miss out the most on this boost to their development and outcomes. High quality childcare is key social infrastructure, it helps parents work and narrows the gap between poorer children and their more affluent peers.”

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