1140 programme up and running

Families are benefiting from new Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) free entitlement arrangements

1140 programme delivered

North Lanarkshire Council is the largest local authority in Scotland to deliver the 1140 funded hours programme to all eligible families. 

Thousands of families are now benefiting from an increased provision in childcare: there are 80 nursery classes and 23 family learning centres delivering the programme in communities throughout the area. 

In addition, there are 42 private, voluntary and independent nurseries and 96 childminders all delivering the full additional hours to nursery children.   

Around 7,500 nursery-aged children are benefiting from the new arrangements, which have been implemented ahead of schedule and despite the challenges posed by coronavirus. 

In July this year the Scottish Government announced a delay to the implementation of the 1140 programme due to the current health crisis. However, North Lanarkshire Council chose to continue with the programme in order that families in the area could fully benefit. 

Councillor Frank McNally, Convener of Education and Families, said: "The delivery of the 1140 funded hours has been a key priority for this administration and I am delighted that we are the largest council in Scotland to deliver the programme in full, for our 7,400 eligible families. 

"The extra hours are available to all children aged three and older, as well as eligible two-year-olds. 

"This offers more flexibility for families and extended opportunities for children to play and learn both indoors and out. And, as well as the additional hours, every child attending nursery receives a free lunch. 

"Despite the government removing the statutory duty on councils delivering the programme, I am incredibly proud that North Lanarkshire has kept to its word to local parents and delivered the initiative in full. I'd like to thank parents for their understanding, and our early learning and childcare team for their diligent work. I also thank our partners for their efforts." 

The North Lanarkshire 'Loving Lunches' programme has been a great hit with the children and parents alike.   

Children have been enjoying the social aspect of sitting down and eating with their friends, while their parents have provided lots of positive feedback, including seeing an increase in the range of foods their children will now try. 

All early learning and childcare settings, including funded providers, are complying with Scottish Government coronavirus guidance so they are as safe as possible. 

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