Further childcare measures announced

The latest measures to improve childcare arrangements for
families were announced by Margaret Hodge at the annual Sure Start
conference today, writes Clare

Hodge revealed

The children’s minister revealed that for the first time,
thousands of parents will be eligible for financial support to help
pay for nannies from April 2005.

“By providing quality, accessible and affordable childcare
that is available to parents when and where they need it, we are
creating the conditions for children to develop, parents to work,
train or access education and for families and communities to
escape poverty,” Hodge said.

Under the Childcare Approval Scheme, families with incomes less
tham £59,000 per year will be able to apply for Working Tax
Credit support for childcare in their own home.

Measures will be put in place to help parents with the
recruitment process and will ensure that nannies are over 18,
qualified, have a first aid certificate and have been checked to
ensure they are suitable to work with children.

The announcement follows the publication of the
government’s 10 year strategy for childcare last week.

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