Children’s centres plans threatened by teacher shortages

A shortage of teachers could undermine the government’s
goal to have 2,500 children’s centres up and running by

The fears were revealed in planning guidance issued by the
government to local authorities, detailing how they should develop
Sure Start children’s centres.

According to the guidance, every children’s centre that will
provide early years provision must as a minimum employ an early
years teacher on a half-time basis.

The document goes on to state that most centres will exceed this,
and that all centres offering integrated child care and early
learning should employ a full-time teacher within 12 to 18 months
of opening.

However officials admitted in the guidance that “in some
areas of the country, local authorities have found it difficult to
recruit teachers for children’s centres”.

They suggest that locating children’s centres at primary
schools “could lead to better ways of using existing
teachers” and help solve the problem.

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