Tory MP welcomes move to increase early teaching

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AN MP has welcomed a government move to extend free early education for two-year-olds.

Currently, three and four-year-olds get 15 hours of education each week.

Now the government has extended this to include two-year-olds – including 4,000 in Hampshire.

Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage said: ‘Giving children an equal start in life and ensuring that they are ready for school is hugely important.

‘That is why I am pleased that this government has expressed its commitment to giving the most disadvantaged two-year-olds 15 hours of free early education.

‘This will help to ensure that all children are able to reach their full potential, regardless of their background.’

Around 260,000 children will benefit from the scheme. Currently it covers 116,000 children.

Government also pays up to 70 per cent of childcare costs for low and middle-income families.

The system works through tax credits.

The government has said it will also introduce tax-free childcare from autumn next year.

That scheme will see eligible families receive up to £2,000 toward each child’s care