Financial Support for Early Years & Childcare Providers
Firstly, thank you to all those providers who are meeting the needs of our critical workers and vulnerable children in Devon, you are equally all critical workers and are valued as such. Some of you are operating more flexibly, for longer days and weekends, to meet the needs of shift workers and those working overtime, and accepting new children when other settings have closed. As priority we want to support all settings that are open, providing the vital childcare that is required.
Further to our recent Emergency Sustainability Grant / Loan funding, a number of applications were passed to Audit for scrutiny. We apologise but any approved or pending applications cannot be processed and no further applications can be accepted in the current format. We have been asked to review the financial support that is available for providers so that there is consistency and transparency for the whole sector, recognising different Government funding support that is available to some settings. We apologise for any inconvenience and hope to get the finer details confirmed early next week for the proposals we have below.
Our first proposal, that has been approved, is to support open settings with Incentivising Funding. As this is new funding, we need to ensure that we meet financial regulations and as soon as the details are finalised we will confirm how it will be claimed or allocated to settings. We can confirm that it will be attached to the critical workers and vulnerable children that are at your setting (all ages).
In addition, we hope to have some Grant Funding available. This will only be available if required, once you have firstly accessed the other Government Funding listed within this link. It is not available for settings to offer additional free childcare to parents and normal childcare charges should apply. You can remind parents that they can use Tax Free Childcare and parents that are on Universal credit / Working Tax Credit should enquire if the additional cost will be refunded. New children due to start or be funded will be added to the Summer Term Headcount and critical worker or vulnerable children, that have moved due to a setting closure will be added.
And finally, we will look at Loan Options for settings that have a short-term cash flow problem. We have paid our Early Years Funding Summer Forecast payment (except for maintained nurseries/schools), calculated as 100% of Spring Term funding (to group settings) or 75% of Summer Term hours (for all childminders or group settings that requested an amended amount). This is to allow wage costs for April and May and we hope this will be sufficient if there are delays with the Job Retention Scheme for staff furloughing or the Self-employed Income Support Scheme.
We do need some time this week to work through each level of support. You do not need to email or call us as this may cause delays and further information will be sent to all providers by email and the Provider Portal. Please bear with us and be assured that we will look to support settings in the best way possible.
Early Years & Childcare Service