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To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what steps his Department is taking to ensure childcare providers have security of funding for the duration of study courses being taken by their employees; and if he will make a statement.
As set out in our children's plan we have a long-term commitment to have a world class early years system. To improve the quality and training of the early years workforce we have committed an investment of £505 million in a graduate leader. Fund of which £232 million has been allocated for settings via local authorities to introduce more graduate leadership of early years setting in the private, voluntary and independent sectors.
Funding to support training and continuous professional development for the wider workforce (for example up to Level 5 and to work with children with additional needs) is included within the Outcomes, Quality and Inclusion block of the Sure Start, Early Years and Childcare Grant (which is £439 million). The funding is not ring-fenced so that local authorities have the decision how to allocate spend depending on local needs. Section 13 of the Childcare Act 2006 however, states that local authorities have a duty to secure the provision of information, advice and training for childcare providers.