Prime Minister Boris Johnson fails to even mention the early years sector during his speech to the nation as more and more childminders and nurseries continue to shut their doors forever

11th May 2020

The early years sector are once again in limbo after Prime Minister Boris Johnson failed to even mention them during another landmark speech to the nation yesterday evening.

The speech left more questions than answers for most of the population and caused new levels of worry and stress for childminders and nurseries who already feel abandoned by the UK government.

Workers were urged to go back to work if they can't work from home but with the early years sector closed to all but keyworkers, and grandparents being unable to provide childcare, this is impossible for many families.

There were no firm plans on when schools would reopen but the Prime Minister did say he hoped that some primary school children from reception, Year 1 and Year 6 might be able to go back to school at the beginning of June.

Parents were left amazed by the choice of year groups first mooted to go back with many wondering why non-socially-distant-savvy reception and Year 1's would be the first back.

Many parents of young children vowed that they would not allow their children to be "used as an experiment" and said they would not send their children back in June. Others questioned whether or not fines would be levied on parents choosing to keep their children at home if schools were to reopen.

The news is only set to cause more panic and concern for early years settings who are already at breaking point. A recent poll revealed that nearly a sixth of childcare providers are set to permanently close due to Covid-19 with a further 34% unsure of whether they would ever reopen again.

A tweet from the Department for Education stated they are "asking education and childcare settings to prepare to open for more children from 1 June" with more guidance set to be revealed later this afternoon.

We will keep you updated on the latest developments as they happen from the news centre and continue to campaign on behalf of the early years sector for more government support for childminders and nurseries.

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