Address eligibility criteria to offer world-leading early years support, research finds

England could be among the world’s leading systems for access to early years if disparities around eligibility for children from the poorest families are addressed, according to new research from the Sutton Trust. The organisation finds that the cost of 30 hours of early years education for a family of two parents earning a combined income of about £16,500 with two young children aged two and three living in England equates to eight per cent of their income if they do not meet eligibility criteria for additional funded provision. While this is considerably more than for a similar family in countries including Denmark, where costs would equate to three per cent of income, and Ireland, where costs would equate to five per cent, it is significantly less than Slovenia, where childcare would cost 21 per cent of the family’s income and the USA, where the figure hits 39 per cent. Read more.

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