Childcare provision in Sunderland under review

More than 800 families and carers have taken part in a review of childcare services across Sunderland.

Their comments will form the basis of a city council report to be published into childcare provision in March.

Initial findings show 80% of families in Sunderland use childcare, including family and friends.

The main reasons identified for childcare were to enable parents to go out to work and to help with the personal development of young children.

Pat Smith, portfolio holder for children and learning at Sunderland Council, said: "The response to this city-wide assessment has been overwhelming.

'Very grateful'

"It has allowed us to capture a really detailed picture of where we are doing well in terms of childcare provisions in Sunderland, and what we can improve upon.

"Every person who took part in the survey has helped to contribute to the improvement of childcare across the city and we are very grateful for their support in this assessment."

Under the Childcare Act 2006 local authorities are required to ensure as far as is reasonably practical that the provision of childcare is sufficient to meet the requirements of parents in order to enable them to work or undertake education or training leading to work.

Councils are required to make this assessment every three years.

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