Lesley Griffiths, Minister for Communities and Tackling Poverty in the Welsh government has today responded to a communication from PACEY Cymru on planning issues faced by registered childminders in Wales that have been heightened by the changes to childcare regulation in Wales that come in to affect from 1st April 2016.
The letter addresses the key points raised around identification of the issue and the call for clearer guidance. In line with this the letter states that;
- Local Planning departments are to receive a revised circular on this issue. This circular was sent to local authority planning departments and childcare teams on 15 February 2016. Read it in English and in Welsh.
- Local planning departments will be encouraged to work closely with the childcare sector to meet local childcare needs.
- As the majority of childminders are already caring for over-8s the extension of the upper age limit should have no bearing on planning requirements
- The Minister also thanked PACEY Cymru for ongoing collaborative work on this key issue and the supporting work we are doing.
You can read the Minister's full response here. The circular to local authorities in English and in Welsh may aid you if you choose to move forward in discussions with local planning departments on an individual basis.
PACEY Cymru's Direct Services Manager, Claire Protheroe, has written a supporting blog that looks in more detail at this issue.