Imelda Richardson, Chief Inspector of Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales, said:
We welcome today’s announcement from the Minister for Communities and Tackling Poverty to extend the upper age limit for the registration of childcare provision from eight to 12 years.
We are committed to improving the quality and diversity of childcare for all children and extending regulation is a positive step forward to ensure consistency in the care for babies, toddlers and children up to 12 years.
We all know the important part that quality childcare plays in a child’s development and wellbeing.
Parents want to know their child is safe when they leave them in the care of someone else and these changes will also re-assure parents of the consistency in quality and standard of care offered across a range of services.
These changes apply across the range of childcare and play provision including child-minders, out of school clubs, and holiday play schemes and will play a key role in providing a positive experience around the wellbeing and care of older children between 8 and 12.
We are working with providers to minimise any disruption to their business and support them in their transition in offering regulated care for older children.
I want to ensure children receive the best quality childcare and that it provides them with positive experiences to enhance their wellbeing.
To do this we will continue to improve on our inspection methods and keep apace with modern practice to have a greater impact on improving childcare.
Work is already underway to build upon the strengths of our existing inspections and a new inspection framework will be launched in April 2016.