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Early Learning and Childcare is changing

If your minded children were offered a funded place at nursery for six hours a day, five days a week – how would this affect your childminding business? Would your parents be able to afford to say ‘no’ to a funded nursery place?

By 2020 this will be a reality. Currently, funded provision of Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) is offered to all three and four year olds, as well as eligible two year olds. From August 2014, this funded provision increased to 600 hours per year, equivalent to around 16 hours per week if delivered during school term time. However, the Scottish Government is committed to increasing the ELC entitlement to 1140 hours per year by 2020. This will continue to cover all three and four year old children, and eligible two year olds. High quality will be at the heart of ELC provision, as will providing the flexibility parents need to work, train or study.

We know these funded ELC places are a big help for families but SCMA would like to make sure that childminders are given the opportunity to be partner providers, paid for providing this service by local authorities. In essence, we believe that a childminding service is the ideal setting for children to experience their funded hours and we are now campaigning for a blended approach to childcare.

Although your childminding service may be full at the moment, what will happen to your business when the funded hours of ELC increase in 2020? Childminders must be given the opportunity to be partner providers to deliver funded ELC with local authorities. This way parents benefit from more flexibility and children benefit from the quality, ELC provided by childminders.

SCMA is committed to lobbying for greater representation of childminders within the funded ELC workforce, but we need your help. The more voices, the greater the noise!

Pledge to Save our Services: #SOSchildminding now.