Four children’s centres in Brighton and Hove are earmarked for closure as the council looks at ways to save millions of pounds.
Brighton and Hove City Council said that it would merge some centres to reduce the number from 12 to 8.
The council said that a consultation about the proposed reorganisation was under way, adding: “Managers are investigating ways of making savings of £779,000 next year.
“This has to be seen in the context of rising costs and the council losing around £100 million of government funding over the next four years.
“The proposals aim to enable the council to deliver the best possible children’s centre services in future.
“They are part of a drive to focus council resources on services that will deliver the best outcomes for those families who need most help.
“Part of the plan is to reduce the numbers of designated children’s centres from 12 to eight by merging some of them.
“The Healthy Child Programme delivered by Health Visitors as part of the children’s centres service would form the bedrock of a universal service, together with free early education places for low-income two year olds and all three and four year olds.
“It is envisaged that there would be fewer groups run from children’s centres and other venues which are open to everyone.
“These groups would be changed from ongoing drop-in groups – eg, baby groups, stay and play groups – to time-limited groups with a booking system.
“Parents who need more help would be able to attend more sessions.”
To read the full consultation paper and respond to it, click here.
A meeting of the full council on Thursday 26 February will make the final decision on this aspect and the rest of the council’s budget for next year.
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