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Childcare Consultation Survey

The Department for Education is currently consulting on proposed changes to the Early Years Foundation Stage including changes to some staff:child ratios in early years settings.

Find out more about the consultation here.

This survey is being conducted alongside the consultation and collects important information needed to help understand how the proposed changes to the staff:child ratio might affect your childcare provision. Results from the research will help the government understand the impact of the proposed ratio changes and will be part of the body of evidence used to inform a decision on the proposed changes.

This is your chance to have your voice heard and let us know how these changes may affect you.

The research is being carried out by the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen) and Frontier Economics on behalf of the Department for Education.

Find out more about Frontier Economics and the Department for Education.

Taking part is easy

Taking part involves completing a 10 to 15 minute online survey at a time that suits you.

If you have been invited to take part, please follow the link below and when prompted enter the unique access code that you can find on your letter.

What will you ask me about?

You will be asked about the current status of your childcare provision, as well as on the likelihood of adopting the proposed changes to the staff:child ratio and the possible effect of these changes on your income, costs and parental fees.

Do I have to answer all the questions?

Don’t worry – you don’t have to answer any questions you don’t want to, you can just skip on to the next one.

We guard your privacy            

We will treat the information you give us in the strictest confidence under the UK General Data Protection Regulation. The results collected will be used for research purposes only. Your personal information will be stored securely and no one but the research team at NatCen and Frontier Economics will be able to access it. At the end of the research, all data will be anonymised before being passed on to the Department for Education and your personal information will be securely deleted.

You can see our privacy notice here.

Why have I been selected to take part?

Your setting has been invited to take part in this research because you previously completed the Survey of Childcare and Early Years Providers which took place in March to July 2021 and agreed to be re-contacted.

We have contacted you using the contact details you provided at the end of that study.

Where can I find out more about this study?

For anything not covered on here, please call 0800 652 4572 or email One of our staff will get back to you to answer your query as soon as possible.

If you would like to contact the Department for Education about this project, you can email

Who is carrying out this survey?

We are carrying out this survey in partnership with Frontier Economics. You can find out more about who NatCen are and what we do here.

How can I contribute to the consultation on the proposed changes to the staff:child ratio?

The Department for Education has launched a public consultation regarding proposed changes to staff:child ratios.

You can respond to this consultation as well as completing this survey.

Please complete the survey regardless of whether you also respond separately to the consultation. The questions asked in the survey are different from those in the consultation and it is important we hear from you to ensure the results are unbiased.   

Findings from the survey will be published alongside the consultation response in Autumn 2022.