Children's Centres: Closures

Department for Education written question – answered on 23rd April 2018.

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Photo of Tracy Brabin Tracy Brabin Shadow Minister (Education)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to Stop Start, published by the Sutton Trust on 16 April 2018, if he will make an assessment on the implications for his policies on the recording of sure start centre closures as a result of the findings in that report.

Photo of Tracy Brabin Tracy Brabin Shadow Minister (Education)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to Stop Start, published by the Sutton Trust on 16 April 2018, if he will make an assessment of the potential benefits of introducing a national register of children’s centres which sets minimum levels of Sure Start provision.

Photo of Nadhim Zahawi Nadhim Zahawi The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

The findings in the Stop Start report are estimates based on analysis of different datasets and a snapshot survey of local councils. Local councils currently supply data on children’s centre provision through the Department for Education’s ‘Get Information about Schools’ (GIAS) database at https://www.get-information-schools.service.gov.uk/. Statutory guidance says that local councils should update their children’s centre data on a regular basis to reflect any changes to provision. We believe that the GIAS database is the most efficient and proportionate method for local councils to report children’s centre closures on a regular basis. As set out in legislation, local councils have responsibility for determining precisely what services are delivered through children’s centres. We believe that this is the right approach.

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