Policy Document

Children and Families Act 2014




United Kingdom


Family & Children



Main implications

The UK Public General Act changes the law to give greater protection to vulnerable children, establish a new system to regulate the provision of childcare for children with special educational needs, provide help for parents to balance work and family life, and makes some important changes to the adoption system. Part IV contains provisions relative to childcare, and leads to the following changes:

- Childminders are given the option to work in agencies if they want to.

- The Chief Inspector has the right to charge a fee for the inspection of early years provisions under certain circumstances.

- Section 11 of the Childcare Act 2006 is repealed: This means English local authorities no longer have a duty to assess the sufficiency of the provision of childcare in their area.

- Section 7 of the Childcare Act 2006 is amended as follows: English local authorities must secure early years provision free of charge, but regulations may require the authority to discharge its duty by making arrangements which secure that an early years provider chosen by a parent of the child provides for the early years provision.

- The act removes the requirements of the Education Act 2002 on governing bodies of maintained schools to consult with local authorities, staff, and parents on whether to offer community facilities or services. This implies that schools are given more flexibility in the provision of childcare.

Benefits & Requirements

Coverage: Eligible groups or beneficiaries

Not specified

Types of provision stipulated by this document


Types of childcare provided by the State stipulated by this document

Early years schooling provision free of charge.

Pre-primary school entry age


Benefits offered by this document for using childcare services


Types of benefits guaranteed by this document


Conditions for accessing this benefit

Not specified

Amount of the subsidy or contribution granted

Not specified

The duration of the benefit is determined by the following specific conditions

Not specified

Does this document guarantee a provision of childcare free of costs?


Read the Law

Full Text Source in English

2014, chapter 6

Original full text source in native language

2014, chapter 6

Full text web source in English


Original full text web source in native language


Comments & Clarifications

The Children and Families Act, unless otherwise stated, generally extends to England and Wales only, and applies to England only.

Secondary Literature & Sources

Secondary literature

- Waldegrave, H., & Lee, L. "Quality Childcare: Improving early years childcare". Policy Exchange, London, 2013. Available at http://www.policyexchange.org.uk/images/publications/quality%20childcare.pdf
- Gheera M., Gillie C., Kennedy S., Long R., & Seely A. "Government support for childcare and childcare reform under the Coalition Government". House of Commons Library, Social Policy and Business and Transport Sections, 2014. Available at: http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/research/briefing-papers/SN06807/government-support-for-childcare-and-childcare-reform-under-the-coalition-government


Ernestina Coast, Ginevra Floridi & Wendy Sigle
London School of Economics and Political Science

Data collected in the framework of the Population Europe Research Finder and Archive (PERFAR)

Cite as

SPLASH-db.eu (2014): Policy: "Children and Families Act 2014" (Information provided by Ernestina Coast, Ginevra Floridi & Wendy Sigle). Available at: https://splash-db.eu [Date of access].