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Page last updated at 10:16 GMT, Wednesday, 23 May 2012 11:16 UK

Could Dutch childcare model work for UK?


The average family in Britain spends more than a quarter of their income on childcare. One way to cut the cost would be to follow what has happened in Holland, where there have been big changes to the system in recent years. The government now subsidises childcare for whichever method the parents choose, including qualified family members.

The BBC's Sanchia Berg met Martin Flyer, Director of childcare at the Dutch Ministry of Social Affairs, who said that under the new system the number of childminders exploded but that the key to finding a successful system was to "trust parental advice".

The Dutch payment system is much simpler than that of the UK, and one Dutch mother said that although the changes didn't affect the price parents paid, it had brought much needed choice and flexibility.

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