The Childcare Business Grant Scheme that is available to childminders, childcare providers on domestic premises and childminder agencies operating in England will be ending on 31 March 2019.
Department for Education (DfE) announced the decision on their website stating:
"The Department for Education has taken the decision to end the Childcare Business Grant Scheme (CBGS) from 31 March 2019. This is based largely on a decrease in the number of applications received for the CBGS. We have decided that it would be sensible therefore that the Scheme is not renewed after March 2019."
PACEY's Chief Executive, Liz Bayram commented on these updates:
"PACEY is deeply disappointed to learn that the DfE has decided to end the Childcare Business Grant Scheme from next April. Many prospective childminders are on low incomes, and frequently they are new parents exploring a return to work. This grant scheme – the only national dedicated funding for childminding – is absolutely central to their decision to start the long process of registering with Ofsted and establishing their business.
“Since 2012, the number of registered childminders in England has dropped by 27 per cent due, mostly due to fewer new childminders registering. PACEY is clear what needs to be done to halt this decline and make childminding sustainable. Childminders need more help with start-up costs and a removal of the key barriers preventing them from delivering funded places. At a time when there is unprecedented and growing demand for flexible childcare, government should be doing all it can to support new childminders to register. The termination of the Childcare Business Grant scheme is sadly likely to accelerate the decline in childminders, which will ultimately lead to fewer families accessing high quality, flexible childcare that best meets their needs.”
PACEY has written a letter to Nadhim Zahawi MP about the scheme closure.
You can still apply for the Childcare Business Grant up until 31 March 2019. Find out more information on Business Smart or apply for the grant here.