The Scottish Government has committed to improving and increasing high quality, flexible early learning and childcare (ELC) which is accessible and affordable for all children and families. The Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 (the Act), made changes to ELC provision in Scotland. From August 2014, entitlement to ELC rose from 475 hours per year to 600 hours per year (around 16 hours per week during term time) for three and four year olds and 15 per cent of two year olds. This was extended to 27 per cent of two year olds from August 2015. There are plans to increase this entitlement to 1,140 hours per year (about 30 hours per week during term time) by 2020.
The early learning and childcare audit aims to establish how effectively the Scottish Government and councils are working together to improve outcomes for children and support parents by expanding access to funded ELC. As part of this, the audit will consider the views of parents and carers about the impact early learning and childcare services has on their lives.
Read the blog by Rebecca Smallwood about the survey we did in the summer and how the results will help with our audit work.