Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 19°C

min temp: 11°C

ESTD 1874 Search

WIN A NEW HYUNDAI i10 - See the EADT on June 8 for full details

East Anglia: Does it pay to work? Childcare costs more than average mortgage

09:31 04 March 2014

Nursery rated as Outstanding by Ofsted inspectors

Nursery rated as Outstanding by Ofsted inspectors

The cost of part-time childcare in our region now exceeds average monthly mortgage repayments, new figures have revealed.

shares

Parents now pay more for childcare than any other household bills, including mortgage bills, forcing many mothers to stay at home rather than return to work.

A report by The Family and Childcare Trust reveals how a family of two children in the east of England - with one child in part-time nursery care and another in an after school club - pay £7,762 a year for childcare.

This compares to average regional mortgage repayments of £6,623.

Full-time childcare costs £11,719 a year, which is 77 per cent higher than the average mortgage in the east of England.

With childcare costs responsible for a significant slice of earnings, many families cannot afford for both parents to work.

In other circumstances, by the time the mother has paid for childcare, she barely has any money left over.

Mother-of-three Hayley Stopher, from Ipswich, is a secondary school teacher. More than 80 percent of her part-time wage pays for childcare for her twin girls and two-year-old son, but she enjoys her job and wants to keep a foot on the career ladder.

She said: “We have no choice. I would find it hard to go back into teaching at the same level when my children are in school.”

Another mother, Charmaine McCullum, says her family are only £100 better off each month when she works, than if they survived on benefits alone.

“So really, where is the encouragment in that?” she asked.

The report also highlights how nursery costs for the under twos in the region has risen by five percent in the last year.

Anand Shukla, chief executive at Family and Childcare Trust, believes the current childcare system is ‘not fit for purpose’.

She said: “When even part-time childcare costs outstrip the average mortgage for a family home – and many parents have to spend more than a quarter of their income on childcare – it’s clear that our childcare system isn’t fit for purpose.

“We need a childcare system that helps parents who want to work and contribute to the economy and gives children the best start in life. The Family and Childcare Trust wants to see all political parties commit to a long-term childcare strategy that delivers for parents, providers, and crucially, for children.”

The Trust believes there are some immediate steps that the Government could take in order to address escalating childcare costs. These include extending free early education to all two-year-olds, making better use of school premises and children’s centres to provide flexible childcare provision and uprating Working Tax Credits to account for childcare cost increases since 2005.

shares

1 comment

  • Absolutely nothing in here about the appalling pay that people caring for other peoples children get. Mum's want to earn money, fair enough, but why expect other to work on minimum pay to support their own ambitions? Anyway, why is it now accepted that parents can decide to have children and the state are responsible for providing their care. Surely, its down to the parents to decide how they fund that decision? Note that I say parents. Part-time or stay at home dad's are just as acceptable.

    Report this comment

    Oft Meanders

    Tuesday, March 4, 2014

A golf club (not in Haverhill)

The council has been criticised by the Taxpayers’ Alliance for owning the Haverhill properties.

Zena Gravener is cutting the central grass verge on Old London Road, Copdock, with a sickle.

A 73-year-old woman has been tackling an overgrown grass verge with her scythe on the old A12 “before someone gets killed”.

Fire crews called to Elmsett.

Fire and police crews were called last night to investigate a mist that had formed over Elmsett.

Tollgate Partnership Ltd directors Jayne Gee and Daniel Watts briefing Will Quince MP (centre) overlooking part of the Tollgate Village site.

Colchester’s MP has offered to broker talks between town centre retailers and out-of-town developers in a row over future investment.

The octopus mural on the wall of the rare cow - which has attracted complaints from the Sudbury Society.

A bright colourful mural of sea creatures painted on a building in a conservation area in Sudbury has prompted a flurry of complaints from people, who have branded it “garish” and “more appropriate to a seaside promenade” than an historic market town.

Exhibition showing plans for 560 homes, shops, care and community facilities to be built on countryside on the edge of Felixstowe. Walton Community Hall.

Proposals for a huge new estate in countryside on the edge of Felixstowe would create “significant and demonstrable” harm to the resort and the loss of some of its best and most versatile farmland, say senior planning officers.

Preventing early deaths from cardiovascular disease and ensuring more children are at a healthy weight are among the most urgent health priorities for Suffolk, according to a new profile of the county.

St Nicholas Hospice. Neighbours volunteers, patients and hospice staff are celebrating the service receiving the Queens Award.

A hospice service which helps to make living with dying better for people in their own homes has received recognition from Buckingham Palace.

Police requests to access personal communications hit 26,000 across Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk last year. Stock image.

Essex Police has claimed the way it uses communications data is “firm and robust” after new figures revealed they requested to access private emails and phone records nearly 20,000 times over two years.

Skinner Street, Bury St Edmunds.

The “only real medieval street left in Bury St Edmunds” would once again be an “inviting and attractive” place under proposals by a town centre group.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages