Steady progess is being made in schools' service

I am writing in response to your story Children are losing out in Westminster (W&V, Feb 6). It is not correct to state that Westminster is the fifth worst ranked authority in the country for providing the full range of extended services such as after-sc

I am writing in response to your story "Children are losing out in Westminster" (W&V, Feb 6).

It is not correct to state that Westminster is the fifth worst ranked authority in the country for providing the full range of extended services such as

after-school activities, childcare and support for parents.

There are at least seven lower-ranked councils in London alone.

While we acknowledge that there is still work to be done, the latest figures show that 66 per cent of our schools are now providing the full range of services.

The government's latest positive assessment of Westminster's performance is further evidence of this progress and they have expressed confidence that we are on course to meet all our targets.

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Your article also focused on nursery provision in Westminster. It is important to note that affordability is not only an issue in Westminster but across the capital where suitable premises are at a premium.

We are tackling this issue as a priority and are targeting resources to help those parents who want to remain in work and training, focused in areas across the borough where it is needed most.

In Marylebone in particular, I would also like to reassure parents that provision in this area has increased in the last two years, that there are vacancies at several existing nurseries and that we are currently in talks with local providers to deliver more affordable and flexible childcare.

Mike Potter

Director of Children's Commissioning

Westminster City Council

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