The Cost of Living Crisis
Delivering his first Budget as Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt revealed he will increase the supply of wraparound care by September 2026
Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has announced wraparound care will be available at all primary schools , so parents can drop their children at school from 8am and pick up at 6pm.
He announced the plans as he delivered the Spring Budge t in the Commons on Wednesday, March 15, with announcements on everything from energy bills to childcare costs.
Mr Hunt said he wants to increase the supply of wraparound care at all primary schools, meaning by September 2026, all school-age parents are able to drop their kids off at school for 10 hours, enabling them to work.
Currently, only a third of schools offer wraparound care, he said.
- Keep up to date on all things Budget and how it affects YOUR family here
- Childcare isn't just for parents: Why EVERYONE should celebrate more and better childcare
'Designed to tackle the barriers working parents face'
The Chancellor explained the childcare reforms were designed to tackle the barriers to working for parents.
He said: 'Todays reforms will increase childcare availability and reduce costs.
'I don't want any parent with a child under 5 to be prevented from working if they want to.'
Around £289 million of 'start-up' funding has been allocated to the reforms, although no detail on provisions for its long-term funding have been announced.
Also, it has also not been made clear whether this would be compulsory for schools.
Government urged to deliver these proposals quickly
According to Mr Hunt, the 'ambition' by September 2026 was for all primary schools to begin to provide 'a full wraparound offer' either by themselves or in partnership with other schools. To read the details about all childcare announcements, click here.
Commenting on the Budget, Dame Rachel de Souza, the Children's Commissioner for England, said: 'Schools sit at the heart of their communities, with facilities that are trusted by children, and can help meet the challenge of increasing rent or mortgage payments faced by many private providers.
'I urge the Government to deliver these proposals as quickly as possible to benefit children and families who need this support now, and in a way that maintains quality of care. I look forward to engaging closely with these plans in detail as they emerge.'
What else was announced in today's Budget?
In a huge childcare costs announcement, for the first time ever, babies as young as 9 months old will be entitled to 30 hours free childcare per week, child-to-staff ratios in nurseries will increase, alcohol prices will rise , and families will get more energy costs support.
For the full details about how the Budget affects you, see our 10 key points on how the budget affects parents.
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