§ Ms. Armstrong
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what guidelines have been issued to the group charged with establishing voluntary accreditation for private nurseries;
(2) what moneys have been allocated to the setting up of the voluntary accreditation scheme for private nurseries;
(3) whether he has agreed the membership of the group to issue voluntary accreditation to private day nurseries; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. John Patten
The ministerial group on women's issues, meeting last October, agreed to encourage the establishment of a national association of private nursery providers and childcare consultants which would set up an accreditation scheme for its members. The group has agreed in principle to provide pump-priming finance for the establishment of such an accreditation scheme. Any childcare provider will have to abide by the relevant statutory regulations, at present under the provision of the Nurseries and Childminders Act 1948 and, from 1991, under the Children Bill, which is due to receive Royal Assent today.