Childcare provision today is growing at a rapid rate. Due to the government pushing parent into work more and more early years providers are setting up. Unfortunately there are not enough trained staff. If the government keep offering financial initiatives to parents to go out to work, the amount of providers will increase. Years ago there was no need for child care provision as usually only one parent would work while the other looked after the home and the children. In today's society both parents have to work to bring in an income to live comfortably.
This usually means children need to access some form of childcare provision. This is considered normal in today's families. The number of single parents is also on the increase. Single parents need to go out and earn a living as benefits are low and the government offer financial initiatives to single parents to find work. All this means that provision for children is needed all over the country in large numbers. At the moment pre-school for four year olds is offered free by the government. This care is offered for a few hours each day.
This does not give the parent time to work and very few workplaces could offer employment to fit in with pre-school hours. The government has targeted families from poor areas, an anti poverty initiative, to receive help via Surestart. Surestart offers families with children under seven help with health, parenting issues and childcare. This childcare is provided free to parents in the hope to encourage the parent/parents to work. Other government funding other than working family tax is available to people on low incomes. The main government help for parents who work is Working Families tax.
This benefit is paid to all parents working sixteen hours or more with children under 18. This benefit is to encourage parents to work. The benefit has been brought in by our labour government. While Labour are still in the benefit should run indefinitely. Working family Tax will pay up to seventy per cent of all childcare costs providing the carers are registered. This is a huge benefit to parents who want to work. The problems arise for the child who is in childcare and settled, if the parent loses their job. The childcare will only be paid to a parent who is in employment.
Should the parent be made unemployed the child will need to be taken out of care. Often this will unsettle the child. The parent may only be out of work for a short time but the childcare place may be lost. The parent then would have to find alternative child care provision. This would be hugely unsettling for a child and cause major concerns for the child. The majority of parents who claim this benefit will be unlikely to be a qualified professional so unemployment is likely. Also parents who need to work and cannot find suitable permanent employment will take employment on a non permanent basis.
Many people today are realising the need for qualifications through media publicity and the huge amount of courses available. Many low income adults get help with fees for college. This means the amount of people studying has risen. A lot of these students are also parents and receive help with childcare costs. The majority of colleges have child care facilities on site. Many child care providers receive funding from various sources. These are a great boost to small settings who have just started out. The problem is the funding is not always sustainable and child care providers cannot keep their business running.
New provider's need a comprehensible business plan and ensure any funding is not a necessity to keep running. The people that suffer from provisions closing down are the children. Child care providers have very much been in the media recently due to poor staff and a continuous staff turnover. It is a sad fact that many of the staff working with young children are not trained. It is only in recent years that the government has taken the ideas of theorists such as Maslow and Steiner and started putting greater emphasis on staff development. Funding is now available to train staff.
In 2002 only half of all childcare workers were qualified. The government now aims to get all childcare workers qualified to at least NVQ level two. The development of staff working with disabled children needs to be enhanced. Many staff caring for disabled children do not have the skills required. Recruitment for child carers is hard as the rate of pay is poor and career possibilities limited. Many providers find the staff do not stay and have to bring in new staff that parents and children do not know. This is not a positive, caring environment that a child needs.
Qualified minders and nursery nurses are very rare and expensive for providers to employ. In my opinion the government needs to look at training and pay in more depth. Our children are the future and every effort is required by the government to ensure the care they receive through early year's provision is the best we can provide. The quality of child care provision varies greatly up and down the country. European countries have much better family allowance and parental leave. Their child care provision is greatly improved on ours.
The emphasis by the government is all about getting parents out to work even though research shows the first and second year of a child's life is crucial to the child's future. It suggests a child is better at home with a consistent one to one carer regime. The child grows emotionally and healthily with this intimate non shared care. An educational charity called "What about the children" argue the government would be better funding mums to stay at home longer with their children. Giving them a stable and loving start to their lives.