Sustainability

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Grandmother playing with babyEstablished roles are changing as reforms to the health system and the school system begin to take effect. These changes sit alongside an international economic situation which is having a profound effect on families.

 

You already know that families are in positions where paying for childcare may be becoming unaffordable and are looking at alternative arrangements such as family members.

 

In order to respond to these changes, local authorities need to move towards a more strategic commissioning role and work with a variety of local providers – including private, voluntary and independent – to secure high quality foundation years services which are sustainable. Good business planning and management skills are essential to ensure your provision is in a healthy financial position. Conducting regular audits will help you to be aware of what’s working well and areas that need more attention.

 

Find out more… (click to open)

The following organisations offer support and audits.

 

 

 

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Comments (2)

  1. Ken McArthur, October 26, 2011
    Whilst I can agree with the main aims of your item on ‘Sustainability’ and I fully agree that there is a need for good business planning and management skill to ensure a ‘healthy financial position’ but when you are not in control of the price your are paid to provide a substantial part of your business and where the value of that decreases, compounded by increases in the cost of providing it which is also largely out of your control due to changes in government policy, no matter how good a financial manager and planner your are, there is going to be come a time when no matter what you do, your provision will become ‘unsustainable’. And unfortunately this time is getting closer and closer for many in the daycare sector. Even the government own a figure has an increase of 30%+ since 2009 and 2010 of daycare nurseries reporting they are making a loss. This now represents 19% of the provision in the country and if you add in those that are only breaking-even, I would estimate that almost 50% of all nurseries are either losing money or have major long term sustainability problems. We can accept that there is an international financial problem and this country must reduce its debits but surely not at the cost of putting in jeopardy 50% of its daycare provision? There are a number of measures the government can take that will have a beneficial impact on the financial viability of these struggling settings. Some of which are items that are part of the unfair playing field the daycare sector finds itself in. Such as VAT at 20%, a cost the government does not impose on its own provision. Another is Business Rates; there has been a call in the industry for a unified business rate for daycare nurseries and at a lower level to bring it more into line with the rates that their own schools pay. Another, maybe a bit more controversial, is were there money a setting receives to provide the free 15 hours early years entitlement is except for Taxation purposes.
  2. Jackie Howse, March 7, 2012
    I agree with all the points that Arthur has made in his post. I run a nursery and Pre-School that is successful due to the hard work and dedication of my staff. However, even though we are full the impact of rising costs and the restrictions and low funding amount per head of providing the 15 hours doesn't leave much change at the end of each month to give staff much deserved pay rises or just as importantly to re-invest in resources for the children that they deserve. All the suggestions given by Arthur on VAT, business rates, tax exemption would be so welcome by the sector and would certainly help settings continue to provide a quality service that each child deserves to be in.

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