Rishi Sunak promotes Tories’ rollout of 15 hours’ free childcare for two-year-olds – UK politics live

PM giving regional radio interviews in run-up to next month’s local elections

Rishi Sunak was on BBC Radio Tees first, where he was interviewed by Amy Oakden.

He started by saying the childcare offer was about giving parents choice. Working parents would eventually have access to 30 hours of free childcare from the moment their “little one” reaches nine months, he said.

We said, look, this is a really big change and we need to take the time to get it right, to give time for the sector to grow and expand and actually that’s why we’re doing it in a methodical way.

And, if you look that is working. Staffing levels in the sector have increased and more people are at work in the sector and the number of places has also increased over the past year as well.

Thousands of parents of two-year-olds across the country are getting help with their childcare costs as the first phase of the biggest ever expansion in childcare starts.

In this first stage, working parents of two-year-olds are now able to access 15 hours a week of government-funded childcare from 1 April.

Labour’s shadow education secretary Bridget Phillipson today slammed the Conservatives’ “childcare pledge without a plan” after a new dossier published by the party revealed families across the country struggling to access childcare.

The dossier contains:

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