Impact of Covid-19 on childcare in Nottinghamshire not as high as other areas
Nottinghamshire has bucked the national trend for providing childcare for young children through the pandemic – and during the national lockdown earlier this year.
The impact of Covid-19 on childcare across the county has not been as high as in other areas, and Nottinghamshire County Council has been able to support early years settings to continue providing places for all eligible two, three and four-year-old children.
The county has been performing well above the national average throughout the pandemic, in terms of the number of nurseries, preschools, and other early years settings which have remained open, or have reopened.
Between 56 per cent and 58 per cent of all early years settings remained open to children of critical workers and vulnerable children during the initial lockdown, which began in March, compared to the national average of between 32 per cent and 35 per cent.
From June onwards, between 56 per cent and 73 per cent had reopened by the end of the school summer term, compared to the national average of between 48 per cent and 50 per cent.
Councillor Philip Owen, chairman of Nottinghamshire County Council’s children and young people’s committee, said: “Nationally, the early years sector has been hit hard by the pandemic. It is pleasing to note that the impact has not been as severe here in Nottinghamshire, but I know that many nurseries, childminders, and other settings are struggling.
“They have done and continue to do an incredibly important job, caring for our children and helping them to learn and develop.
“That’s why we will do all we can to support the vital work they do, by helping them recover and build resilience over the coming months, working with those providers who need our help most, to ensure there is childcare available for those who need or want it.”