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Child Care

Volume 407: debated on Monday 23 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what estimate he has made of the average cost of full-time child care in Buckingham; and if he will make a statement. [109242]

The cost of child care reported in the Department for Education and Skills 2001–02 audit shows average costs for Buckinghamshire, the LEA within which Buckingham falls, of £146 per week for full day care. The audits were completed for each local authority by their respective Early Years Development and Childcare Partnerships. The audits do not give a further breakdown by constituency.Working parents, subject to the level of their income, may receive support through the child care element of the working tax credit. Tax credits are targeted at lower and middle income families who may use a range of types of child care. The child care element of the working tax credit provides for up to 70 per cent. of costs of eligible child care. It can pay up to £94.50 a week for one child (where the child care cost is £135 or above), and up to £140 a week for two or more children (where the cost is £200).No Government has provided the kind of direct support for the costs of child care that is delivered by the child care element of the working tax credit. £1 million a day is now spent on supporting parents with child care costs.The DfES and the Inland Revenue will continue to monitor the cost of child care to ensure good quality, affordable and accessible child care is available for all those who need it.

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills, how many (a) nurseries, (b) playgroups, (c) childminders, (d) out of school clubs and (e) holiday schemes there were in (i) Leeds metropolitan district and (ii) the Leeds West constituency for each year since 1990. [116020]

The information is not available in the form requested. The available information for Leeds local authority is shown in the tables.Figures for 2001 and earlier years for England and Government Office regions were published in DfES Statistical Bulletin 08/01 "Children's Day Care Facilities at 31 March 2001", which is available in the Library and on the DfES website, www.dfes.gov.uk/ statistics. Figures for 2001 for out of school clubs and holiday schemes have recently been revised and are shown in the tables.

Numbers of day care providers1by type of provider: Leeds local authority area: 1998–2001
Position at 31 March each year1998199920002001
Day Nurseries90100120110
Childminders1,4001,2001,2001,200
Playgroups and pre-schools240190130120
Out of school clubs100110120120
Holiday schemes140400200510
1 Figures have been rounded.
2 Includes those schemes exempt from registration.
Numbers of day care places1by type of provider: Leeds local authority area: 1998–2001
Position at 31 March each year1998199920002001
Day Nurseries3,5003,9005,1004,400
Childminders5,4004,7005,3004,700
Playgroups and pre-schools4,9004,2003,2003,000
Out of school clubs2,8002,3002,7002,600
Holiday schemes3,80012,4005,5008,400
1 Figures have been rounded.
2 Includes those schemes exempt from registration.

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills which local authorities (a) have and (b) do not have reciprocal arrangements with other local authorities to pay for (i) nursery and (ii) child care facilities. [119694]

This information is not collected centrally.Although the Department actively encourages reciprocal arrangements, decisions about cross-border funding can realistically be taken only at local level so that proper account can be taken of local needs and circumstances. By April 2004, six months ahead of schedule, all three-year-olds will have access to a free early education place irrespective of where they live.