Supporting solutions to the challenge of delivering 30 hours

The Department for Education (DfE) awarded Childcare Works a national support contract. The project works with providers and local authorities on the implementation of the extended entitlement to 30-hours for working parents.

Childcare Works is a partnership between Hempsall’s, Action for Children, and Mott MacDonald and follows our success in delivering the Achieving Two Year Olds (A2YO) national support contract. Between 2012 and 2016 we worked on the implementation of the free early learning entitlement for least advantaged two-year-olds. A project that saw take-up levels rise to nearly 70% of eligible children.

Childcare Works has the aim of achieving the delivery of childcare for two- three- and four-year-olds in ways in which high-quality childcare is accessible, flexible and affordable. In doing so, we will work directly with providers, local authority early years teams, and their partners, and central government.

The additional 15 hours for families where both parents are working brings significant opportunities in enabling parents to make work pay and support local job creation in the sector. Our key role aims to enable these benefits to be realised by families and children across the country.

We know such reforms bring many challenges and we are a team experienced in finding solutions – as we did with the two-year-old entitlement. We are providing a data and intelligence led approach, where our universal offer to all local authorities in England is overlaid with a significant allocation of resource to a targeted programme. This programme focuses on addressing the barriers to implementation, and directs time and effort where it is needed most and will have the biggest impact.”

Childcare Works has a robust programme of practical and effective support, challenge and solutions for all types of providers and every local authority. We are strongly focused on sufficiency, flexibility, two-year-olds, and access for children with SEND. Our role is to support many of these outcomes.

Key elements of the project:

  • Progress Sharing Meetings (PS Meetings) each term for local authorities
  • A regular Progress Review Form (PR Form) to monitor LA progress and identify support and challenge needs
  • Each local authority has a nominated Programme Adviser
  • A programme of In-depth sessions to look at issues, barriers and solutions in detail
  • Childcare Matters information sessions for all types of early years and childcare provider.
  • Training for trainers and Business Support Officers on solutions for 30-hours
  • Training and info for providers: flexible staffing, occupancy rates, business remodelling, economies of scale and scope.
  • National progress dissemination meetings.
  • Online resources for local authorities posted on LGA Knowledge Hub
  • Online resources for providers posted on with signpost information on the Foundation Years website and email.
  • Direct support for local authorities on a targeted basis: one-to-one and small group, business and action planning, childcare sufficiency assessment, local strategy and partnership facilitation, management support/briefings.
Childcare Works