THE NUMBER of three-year-olds in state schools has almost trebled since 1979, junior minister Margaret Hodge revealed.
Last year there were more than 300,000 three-year-olds compared to 115,000 two decades ago. The increase has been pedominately in part-time places which have increased by almost 180,000 to 268,000 last year. In the same period 8,000 extra full-time places were created for three-year-olds. Between 1997-99 an extra 10,000 places were created.