Memorandum submitted by Maggie Smith, Strategic Lead for Early Years, Early Learning and Childcare, Children and Families Service, Oxfordshire County Council
1. Devising the formula has taken hours of time and effort ,only to anger and disappoint the private voluntary and independent sector who misunderstood its intentions and assumed they would receive considerable extra funding
2.Maintained nursery schools and classes, which offer the highest quality provision for our youngest children stand to be the greatest losers of funding. This is disastrous when we aspire to raise the quality of early learning.It will have a negative impact on recruitment and retention of staff.
3. With no extra funding allocated to the formula in Oxfordshire, topslicing the budget to offer a deprivation supplement means a reduced budget overall to be distributed across all sectors.
4. More time is needed to define and agree quality and flexibility supplements which are complex and would again topslice the overall budget and put provision at risk.
5.The introduction of the Single Funding Formula at the same time as the extension of three year olds entitlement to 15 hours is causing confusion , involves separate funding streams and is causing further anxiety and anger amongst providers.
6. 2010/2011 will bring significant changes to LA budgets and this makes it impossible to predict the Single Funding Formula and its effects beyond one year.