19 Oct, 2015

Children’s centre cuts will hit families, says charity

BBC News | Hannah Richardson | education and social affairs reporter | 19 October 2015

A 4Children survey of managers responsible for 1,000 children’s centres in England suggests two-thirds faced budget cuts this year.

It is the fourth year running that a majority of centres have reported cuts when responding to the annual survey.

The government said it is to consult on how best to develop children’s centres.

Consultation would give parents, carers, councils and key stakeholders the chance to influence and drive what is expected from the centres and how they can have the greatest impact, the government said.

Children’s centres offer families and young children a wide range of support services, such as playgroups and advice sessions. They provide a first point of contact for those struggling to cope with family life and are seen as a useful early intervention tool.

‘Risk of closure’

There are currently 3,000 children’s centres in England which are used by more than one million families.