Top-up hours to be offered at 6 year-round Moray Council Early Learning and Childcare settings
MEMBERS of the Education, Children’s and Leisure Services Committee have today (Wednesday 8 June) agreed to extend the early learning and childcare (ELC) top-up offer to include all year-round settings in Moray.
The extension follows the success of the ELC top-up hours trial at Linkwood Nursery and will see additional hours available for parents/carers of pre-school children at Cullen Nursery; Lady Cathcart Nursery; Lhanbryde Nursery; Linkwood Nursery; Pilmuir Nursery; and Seafield Nursery.
All 3 and 4 year olds in Moray are currently entitled to up to 1140 hours of funded ELC a year (around 30 hours a week in term time), paid for by the Scottish Government. Some children younger than age 3 may also be eligible. The offer of additional hours will be based on capacities within the 6 individual settings, so amounts may vary. The proposed cost varies from £4.75 - £5.00 per hour and is based on available session times.
The majority of our year-round settings are experiencing a high volume of uptake for year-round 1140 hours with nursery managers receiving requests for additional top-up hours to meet individual childcare needs. The remaining council-run ELC settings will continue to operate during term-time with the offer mirroring the 6 hour day followed by schools.
Chair of the Education, Children’s and Leisure Services Committee, Cllr Kathleen Robertson, said that the offering of top-up hours at year-round services will provide parents and carers of pre-school children with a more flexible option of wrap around childcare throughout the year.
“It’s important that we provide high quality, flexible ELC services that are accessible and affordable for families across Moray. The option for parents/carers to use top-up hours at our year-round services will provide them with additional flexibility year-round.”
It's expected that the top-up hours will be available from the new term in August 2022. Further information on early learning and childcare in Moray can be accessed here.