A Strong Voice for Croydon Central - Gavin Barwell MP
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Free childcare for 2,500 two-year-olds in Croydon
06/03/2013 09:33:00


Time and time again research demonstrates that high quality early-years provision is essential to improving the life chances of some of the most vulnerable children in some of the most struggling families in Britain.

That’s why it’s great to hear that the Government is funding an initiative in our borough that is designed to help bridge that gap to ensure that every child starts school with the best possible chance of realising their potential.

Children’s centres in Croydon will work with the Council to support 2,500 free childcare places for two-year-olds by September 2014. Each child whose family meets the free school meals criteria with an income below £16,190 will be eligible for 15 hours of free childcare every week. Those with a statement of special educational needs, those who are in receipt of disability living allowance or those who are adopted from care can also access the places.

I know that the Council is working hard to develop a strong early intervention strategy, and it’s initiatives like this that will make their work a success and positively impact on the lives of thousands of Croydon residents.

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Readers' Comments

On 11/03/2013 18:05:00 Jim wrote:
I don't think it's great at all that the government is finding new ways to spend money despite a £1trillion debt.

"Each child whose family meets the free school meals criteria with an income below £16,190 will be eligible for 15 hours of free childcare every week" - so here we go again. Another government created trap. What incentive is there for a family to get their income up if they stand to lose yet another benefit?

Circumstances change of course - but presumably many of these parents were on their low incomes just three years previously when they decided to reproduce and expect others to pick up the tab. Cameron claims to support family values - but taxes hard working families to support the feckless. It would make more sense to restrict perks such as this to those with a track record of paying into the system.




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