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Nursery Education

Volume 450: debated on Tuesday 10 October 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills whether a full regulatory impact assessment, including an assessment of the impact on private and voluntary nursery providers, has been carried out for the code of practice on the provision of free nursery education places for three-and four year olds which came into force on 1 April 2006; and if he will make a statement. (91819)

The single substantive change to the delivery of the free early education entitlement, set out in the 2006 code of practice, was the extension of the minimum free entitlement from 33 to 38 weeks. Following the consultation, we made clear that we recognised that not all providers would be able to extend their provision to 38 weeks and that, at the relevant local authority’s discretion, they could be funded for the provision they actually delivered.

In addition, all LAs received additional funding to support the extension to the free entitlement. As a result we concluded there should not be a substantive regulatory impact. A regulatory impact assessment was therefore not required.