Major change to childcare rules set to save money for parents

PARENTS could save some major cash on childcare under plans being drawn up by Liz Truss.

The Prime Minister is reportedly pushing for the creation of new “childminder agencies” under a French-style system to cut the cost.

Families could save thousands of pounds under as Liz Truss aims to rip up childminder rules

Families could save thousands of pounds under as Liz Truss aims to rip up childminder rulesCredit: Getty

These would act as “one-stop shops” where workers are registered, trained and helped to find jobs.

They would be given public money and would avoid strict Ofsted inspections, according to The Telegraph.

As well as simplifying the system, these agencies could save families thousands of pounds a year.

The average monthly childcare cost in the UK sits at £936.41 – or £11,236,92 a year, Money.co.uk reports.

But in France, parents spend just £511.44 a month, or £6,137.28 annually.

Not only would this be a huge cash boost, it would also allow many parents to return to work.

Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng hinted at the idea in his speech launching the mini-budget.

In it, he promised to break down “barriers for enterprise” by “reforming the supply side of our economy”, with childcare identified as a key sector.

A source told The Telegraph: “It’s one of the few areas where you can make big reforms that don’t cost the Government money, but actually have a really positive impact.

“There’s not many places left like that.”

Ms Truss helped introduce childminder agencies while working as children’s minister from 2012 to 2014.

She said in a speech at the time that they would “reduce the hassle” involved in finding work and suitable candidates to look after kids.

There are currently very limited numbers of childminder agencies in the UK, but the PM is said to want to aim to follow France and the Netherlands to make them widespread.

They would likely be removed from Ofsted registration and inspection, with quality assurance instead carried out by agencies.

And workers could be permitted to operate from council homes, social housing and high street locations – not currently allowed on many premises.

Childminders may also be able to avoid health checks from their GPs before being allowed to work,

A spokesperson for the Department for Education said: “As the Chancellor has confirmed, we will be taking forward reforms to make childcare easier to access and more affordable which will help boost economic growth through getting people back to work.

“We are exploring a wide range of options, but no decisions have been made.”