Germany's childcare crisis deepens: study

  • World
  • Wednesday, 29 Nov 2023

BERLIN, Nov. 28 (Xinhua) -- There is a shortage of around 430,000 daycare places in Germany, according to a study published by the Bertelsmann Stiftung on Tuesday.

Despite the noticeable progress in the expansion of daycare facilities in recent years, demand has risen continuously, the study said.

Since 2013, children from the age of one are legally entitled to receive care in a childcare facility with a childminder. For children over the age of three, this entitlement has been in place since 1996.

"The shortage of skilled workers is making it increasingly difficult to meet the legal requirements and implement the educational mandate in daycare centers," Anette Stein, an expert in early childhood education at Bertelsmann Stiftung, said.

In mid-October, the United Services Trade Union (ver.di) called on daycare workers across Germany to hold weekly vigils to "draw attention to the staffing situation in daycare centers." Vigils are also scheduled to take place next Thursday.

The Education and Science Workers' Union called on public sector employees in educational institutions to take part in a day of strike on Tuesday. They demand a salary increase of 10.5 percent, but at least 500 euros (548 U.S. dollars) more per month, according to the German Education Union (GEW).

The German government has taken measures, including investing around 4 billion euros in 2023 and 2024 to improve access to childcare and to attract and retain qualified professionals in early childhood education.

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