GMB Call on Bedford council to step up support for nurseries in line with Luton and central Bedfordshire
It is very clear that if Bedford Borough Council does not act now all their Nurseries will probably not last too long in the future and three excellent provisions will be lost to the parents of Bedfordshire says GMB London
GMB, the union for school support staff, call on Bedford Borough Council to take a seriously look at the way it funds its Nursery Schools.
Currently, Bedford Council gives a lump sum of £78,000 for the 3 nursery schools while Central Bedfordshire gives £100,000 per nursery and in Luton, £177,000 per nursery. In addition to the lump sum, each council gives extra money to the nurseries based on number of pupils, see notes to editors for a breakdown given by each council.
Martin Foster, GMB Beds County Branch Secretary said:
“Over the last few years Bedford Borough Council has gone against the way that other Councils in the area fund their Nurseries and in doing so it has contributed to a crisis in all three of theirs.
“The three Nurseries in question are Peter Pan, Cherry Trees and Southway the last of which is under consultation to close. After their last Ofsted inspection both Peter Pan and Southway were rated as outstanding, whilst Cherry Trees who are due another inspection soon, was rated as good. Despite this, one Nursery is now under threat of closure while the other two are looking at making massive staffing cuts to survive.
“One has to ask the question why are Bedford Borough so determined to stave the Authority run Nurseries into extinction, when they were only too happy to praise all three after their last Ofsted inspections. If Bedford Borough Council are genuinely happy with the ratings of their Nurseries then surely instead of causing them further hardship they would look at funding them fairly.
“It is very clear that if Bedford Borough Council does not act now all their Nurseries will probably not last too long in the future and three excellent provisions will be lost to the parents of Bedfordshire.”
Contact: Martin Foster on 07960 957839; Alan Costello on 01582 404842
Notes to editors
1) Bedford Early years single funding formula
2 year olds rate of £5.09 per hour
3 and 4 year olds basic rate of £4.01 per hour plus a deprivation supplement of £0.72 per hour for the 30% most disadvantaged children or £0.30 per hour for the next 30% disadvantaged (those in the 31% to 60% disadvantaged range).
2) Central Bedfordshire
Disadvantaged 2 year olds funded at a rate of £5.39 per hour
3 and 4 year olds rate of £3.70 per hour plus a deprivation supplement of £0.40 for the 0-30% most disadvantaged pupils and £0.15 for the 31-60% disadvantaged.
The Social Deprivation element is based upon the level of disadvantage where a child lives.
2 year olds rate of £5.10 per hour
3 and 4 year olds rate of £4.30 per hour
Deprivation supplement of £120 per child with lowest deprivation score rising to £420 for those children in the highest deprivation score.