Luton Council wants your views on childcare services

Luton Council wants to hear the public's views on childcare services in the town as part of a Childcare Sufficiency Assessment.

The council has launched the consultation to identify any gaps and develop plans to ensure childcare provision meets parents and carers' needs.

Luton Town Hall

Luton Town Hall

The Childcare Act places a duty on councils to secure sufficient childcare, so far as is reasonably practicable, for working parents, or parents who are studying or training for employment, for children aged 0 to 14 (or up to 18 for disabled children).

Councillor Mahmood Hussain, portfolio holder with responsibility for children and young people, said: "It’s really important we receive views from as many people as possible about childcare services in Luton so that we can ensure there are sufficient, high quality childcare facilities that are flexible, sustainable and responds to parents' needs.

"We are committed to helping children get the best childcare provision they deserve, so please have your say by completing our online survey.”

The findings of the last Childcare Sufficiency Assessment, which was published in April 2019, indicated that childcare that meets the needs of working parents, particularly those that work irregular hours, remains a concern for parents along with the cost of childcare.

With regards to the quality of childcare available in the town, 95.5 per cent of Luton’s Ofsted registered childcare providers are rated as “Good” or “Outstanding” providing parents with a good range of providers to choose from.

In response to the last Childcare Sufficiency Assessment the council has improved the information available to families regarding childcare costs and services through the Family Information Service.

Luton Council has actively encouraged providers to work in partnership to provide more flexible childcare for working families and those requiring childcare during school holidays.

The council has continued to see an increase over the last year of providers offering the 30 hours funded childcare and they have supported organisations to find ways of delivering these funded hours in a sustainable way.

A report on the latest assessment is expected to be available by April 2020.

To give your views on childcare facilities please complete the survey online at www.luton.gov.uk/consult by Saturday, November 30.

To request a paper copy call Luton's Family Information Service on 01582 548888.