KIDS should stay in school for longer to help slash childcare costs, the Children’s Commissioner has recommended.

Dame Rachel de Souza said extending the school day was the “most straightforward approach” to aid struggling parents.

The kids’ czar insisted proposals to increase childcare ratios and the amount of free hours mums and dads can get was merely “tinkering”.

She said: “The most straightforward approach to making childcare manageable and affordable is by providing an extended school day, so children can be cared for on school premises.

“It will mean doing much more than tinkering around the edges.”

Currently, parents of all three and four-year-olds can claim between 15 and 30 hours of free childcare a week for 38 weeks a year.

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But many still struggle to juggle work and costs.

Some 43 per cent of mothers have considered quitting jobs because of crippling childcare costs, a Mumsnet poll found.

Cutting costs is a priority for Prime Minister Liz Truss and ministers will announce reforms in weeks.

Dame Rachel also suggested childminders should be paid better to retain more in the workforce.

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