SCMA will be part of the new Early Learning and Childcare Partnership Forum

SCMA will be part of the new Early Learning and Childcare Partnership Forum

SCMA has been invited to sit on the new Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) Partnership Forum, established by the Scottish Government and COSLA.  The first meeting of the Forum will be held at 1pm on Tuesday 23 October in Edinburgh in the Scottish Government offices at Victoria Quay.

The Forum has been established to support genuine and meaningful partnership between service providers delivering funded hours of ELC and local authorities, as it has been recognised that both are experiencing challenges.  The Forum will explore opportunities for improvement by:

  • promoting meaningful partnership working across the ELC sector; 
  • providing a forum for the sharing of best practice along with exploring new ideas and perspectives, both in meetings of the Forum, and by promoting this across the sector by appropriate means; and
  • identifying, and proposing solutions to specific issues raised by providers and/or authorities. 

“The Care Inspectorate has issued information for Scottish Government on the establishment of this new ELC Partnership Forum directly to all childminders in Scotland, together with information on how to participate,” said Maggie Simpson, Chief Executive of SCMA. 

“Any childminder in Scotland can volunteer to be part of the Forum and those attending meetings will vary to reflect the issues being discussed.  On a national level the voices of the childminding sector will be heard as we will represent our members at every meeting.”

Membership of the Forum is representative of the ELC sector and provides an opportunity for as many providers as possible to be involved. Whilst there will be a limit on the number of attendees who can attend each meeting to ensure they are manageable, it is important that there is open access to the Forum and that providers from all sectors feel included.  A 'core membership' of 18 from across local authorities and providers (6 local authority representatives; 4 from the representative groups that includes SCMA; and 8 providers from across the ELC sector), supported by COSLA, Scottish Government and Scotland Excel officials. 

Childminders who wish to participate in the Forum should register their interest in being added to the pool by Monday 8 October 2018.  Please note that future meetings will be held across the country and if possible showcase positive local practice in partnership working. It is proposed that the Forum should meet every 3 months, although members may wish to meet more frequently once established to build momentum. If you would like to participate in the Forum then you need to provide your name and the name of your local authority to