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Pre-school Education: Finance

Question for Department for Education

UIN 196286, tabled on 27 November 2018

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will take steps to ensure that adequate funding is provided to ensure the sustainability of maintained nursery schools.

Answered on

5 December 2018

Maintained nursery schools make a valuable contribution to improving the lives of some of our most disadvantaged children. They also experience costs over and above those of other early years providers. That is why we are providing local authorities with around £60 million a year of supplementary funding, to enable them to protect maintained nursery schools’ funding at least until 2019-20. What happens after this will be determined by the next Spending Review, and informed by research we are carrying out on the value offered by maintained nursery schools.

There is a presumption against the closure of maintained nursery schools. This does not mean that they will never close, but when they do, local authorities have a statutory requirement to ensure that alternative provision: is of at least equal quality; maintains expertise and specialism; and is more accessible and convenient for local parents.