The statistics of childcare in the UK grow every day. Countless children will enter the UK’s childcare system this year. Around 95 children enter the system every day. However, these figures do not reflect the situation in Scotland and Northern Ireland, where comparable data is unavailable. Here are some statistics on child care in the UK: costs, providers, and numbers of children.
Costs of childcare in the UK
Costs of child care have become a major concern for many parents, particularly those who have low household incomes. A recent report by the Institute of Fiscal Studies found that 15% of families with one-year-old children pay more than PS200 per week for child care, while a third spend more than PS10,000 per year. Half of the parents report that the costs are unaffordable.
The study also found that the cost of child care is much higher than it would be in many other countries. This is partly because childcare providers are often VAT-exempt, and this can account for around 15 to 20 percent of the cost. However, the study was carried out in 2015 and therefore does not reflect recent changes in childcare costs. In addition, many working families receive some government assistance to help them meet these costs.
Number of places available
The number of childcare places in the UK has decreased by 20% since August 2012. As a result, the cost of childcare is rising at a rate seven times faster than wages. The cost of child care is highest for London-based parents with a one-year-old, but the costs vary greatly by region and age group.
In the UK, few local authorities can provide enough holiday childcare for full-time working parents. The Coram survey also found that only seven per cent of councils were able to meet the demand for child care for disabled children. The report noted that the lack of places has forced many mothers from their careers, and there is a clear need to change this by ensuring that child care is affordable for all.
Number of providers
The number of registered childcare providers in the UK has decreased over the past year. This is a continuation of a downward trend that began in 2015. More childcare providers are leaving the sector than are joining it. The decrease in provider numbers is primarily due to a reduction in childminders. This category of childcare provider makes up almost half of the total registered providers. Similarly, there has been a decrease in the number of providers operating from domestic premises.
There are 21,010 childcare providers in the UK. Of these, the largest number is based in London with a 16% share of the industry. Manchester and Essex both have more than five hundred childcare providers, with a combined 23% market share.
Number of children
The number of children in childcare in the UK is rising, but the reasons are not always clear. Children are taken into care for various reasons, including abuse. Fertility rates vary throughout the years, which affects the age composition of children. The UK has seen a decline in the number of children in the preschool age group over the past several decades, but the number of children in school-age care has risen in recent years.
The UK has over three million children, which represents 5.6 percent of the population. The largest concentration of young children is in London, with 6.6 percent of the population under five. The most common age of young children was four years old, with males outnumbering females.