The UK is ranked only 23rd out of 43 more developed countries in terms of child wellbeing.
Charity Save the Children assessed countries using pre-primary education enrolment figures, secondary school enrolment rates and under-five mortality levels.
It was found that only 81 per cent of under-fives are receiving pre-school education at present in Britain.
"We know that pre-school nursery or playgroup access helps all children, but especially the poorest. It is a national embarrassment that the UK lags so far behind other countries of a similar size and wealth," said Justin Forsyth, Chief Executive of Save the Children.
He went on to criticise the government over its plans to reduce funding for childcare, adding that this will impact children from the poorest families.
Sweden was named as the best place for child wellbeing, followed by Italy and Japan, which came joint second.
Somalia was ranked as the world's worst place for children.
Posted by Dolcie Thacker