Gransnet forums


childcare rules for over 2s

(33 Posts)
etheltbags1 Wed 03-Sep-14 21:25:44

am I being unreasonable to think that the new rules for 2 year olds childcare is unfair. Maybe someone could put me right, My DGD will be 2 soon and various people have said she will be able to get 15 free hours a week childcare. Her mum works p/t and dad F/T, however the free places are means tested and they earn too much.
Free places for all are limited to 3yr olds and those on benefits.
I though that the new rules are to give all the chance to work, David Cameron was supposed to be wanting all mums to get to work.
Can anyone tell me why a family on benefit needs childcare, if they are on benefit they are sitting at home so why cant they look after their kids themselves. I can understand a single parent for instance may find that having free childcare means the difference to working or not working but to penalise ordinary families is so unfair. Any comments

Gracesgran Sat 06-Sep-14 14:30:46

I think if you read what I said etheltbags1 you will see that I suggested that wrap around care be provided, using the current monies paid out in allowances and child credit, in order that everyone who needs to, could work. I actually feel that, although it may be wonderful to be at home with small children, your first obligation is to put a roof over their head and food on the table.

If it was obvious that there was no payment coming with the children then I think you would find the level of women having children they have no means to support would drop. There is a problem with someone who becomes an unsupported parent in circumstances beyond their control but even then it is best for the women concerned and the best lesson for the children to understand that you are supposed to support yourself.

Aka Sat 06-Sep-14 15:22:38

I agree Nightowl

It is a sad indictment of our society that some parents are deemed unfit or unable to raise their two-year olds and we feel the need to entrust their care to nurseries.

We would do better to reach out to these parents and try to involve them in their child's development. After all, as Nightowl pointed out 'patenting doesn't stop at 5' .

etheltbags1 Sat 06-Sep-14 16:59:20

Gracesgran and Aka, I cant agree more, My original post only asked if anyone could make sense of the rules for childcare between 2 and 3yrs.

However, it is annoying that women go out to work to improve their lives and because they may be earning only a few pounds over the limit have to pay huge sums for childcare which makes them worse off.

I think that one idea (cant say solution as there will never be a solution), might be to make it compulsory to have childcare classes in the classroom and childcare classes as part of the anti natal routine. Using, as had been suggested money saved from the family allowance (old term) that is saved by being means tested.

Also, as I ve been on benefit and raised a child I know what its like and now with that child grown up educated and working, I find that living alone I struggle with low income, I hear many people like myself and see a lot of bitterness in society because of the unfair rules to those just above the benefit trap. Many people on this site will be financially secure (im not having a dig at anyone) and when you are financially secure (Ive been there too), it is so easy to be sympathetic to those who have less.
For instance its easy to generalise those with a lower income, as 'the poor' without knowing their circumstances and to say everyone should have free childcare or benefits etc. One of my past employers was a millionaire and she regularly gave me cast off clothes and fruit from her orchard, I appreciated it but she knew nothing of my circumstances she just assumed I was 'poor' as I did not have a profession like hers.

Gracesgran Sat 06-Sep-14 19:54:33

Ethelbags I am sorry we could not help with the nitty gritty. I feel very strongly about how the system shapes society and probably launched into that when it was a bit off topic.

I have watched supported women who would term themselves single parents when this is not true stay on the minimum number of hours they need to ensure the maximum benefit. They are not bad people; the system is bad that encourages this. I know of one whose children will all be at University within the next two years and she will suddenly have no child related benefits and no support from the children's father who has, additionally, always had the children for the smidgeon under the half a week which allows her to get the benefits.

The children were by no means babies when she left the marriage but, as far as I am aware, she has never worked more than the minimum hours required. She will shortly have a huge drop in her "income" and I have no doubt her pension will be very basic. If the system had insisted on her working, supporting her to do that in the early years, she would not only cost the tax payer less over her lifetime but have a much better life in the long run and provided a better example for the children who, thankfully, have others who have shown that work is the way to have choices in your life.

Iam64 Sun 07-Sep-14 09:31:01

Aka, my experience of family centres is that they do a lot of work with the parents of children who use their services. Midwives and health visitors will hold clinics in the family centres, pre and post birth. Most pregnant women attend their pre birth appointments with midwives, and the hope is the mothers to be will begin to feel at ease in the centre, and so more likely to make use of the services on offer. Family centre staff run baby massage, breast feeding, weaning, baby development, toddler groups, parenting skills groups, and more.

Many Sure Start centres that offered universal services are reverting to targeting families in greatest need. Providing 15 hours 'free childcare' is a positive way of trying to engage the parents in working with family centres to improve the quality of life for their children (and themselves).

Jane10 Sun 07-Sep-14 10:16:25

So many points of view I agree with here. My personal view, and it is strictly related to my own situation, is that I still feel very sad to see my 2 GS` s being bundled straight from bed to car to day care then not being picked up until 6.30 and put straight into bath and bed at the end of the day. They have all meals at nursery. There`s no doubt they have done well and the private "nursery" as it calls itself is excellent but I still feel sad. Sometimes I pick them up and they are tired, pale faced, laddies. I think my DD is missing out on such important years and time she`ll never be able to get back with them. I`m retiring soon and hope to be able to spend much more time with these lovely wee boys.

etheltbags1 Sun 07-Sep-14 10:47:51

Jane10, I feel for you, I'm so glad to see my little one twice a week at least usually more. Hope you can help with childcare more when youre retired. The little ones do need their families.