Focus groups will be set up to discuss upcoming changes to early learning and childcare services in Aberdeen.
Aberdeen City Council recently carried out a survey on the expansion of services as part of new provisions brought in by the Scottish Government.
Under the new rules, which come into force in August, funded early learning and childcare hours will be extended from 600 to 1,140.
From this time, any provider who has a contract with Aberdeen City Council and meets the new national standard can offer funded hours, including council and private Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) settings, childminders, playgroups, Gaelic provision and outdoor provisions.
To discuss the changes, focus groups will be held, organised by the council for parents and carers and carried out in associated school groups (ASGs), the feeder primary schools for each academy.
Beginning on January 20 at Mile End Community Centre, it will be a chance for the public to ask the early years team questions on topics such as entitlement of funding, meals and opening and closing times.
Survey results, gathered from an earlier consultation on the topic, will also be discussed, as will the admissions process.
Provisions vary depending on providers, however, children may be able to get access to full days, part days, term-time hours or by more than one method.
Application forms will be available in schools and online from January 27, with information on the full admissions policy and its process online at the same time.
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An Aberdeen City Council spokeswoman said: “Aberdeen City Council is committed to offering high quality, flexible Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) through learning, play, exploring and having fun.
“From August 2020, across Scotland, the number of funded early learning and childcare hours a child can access will increase from 600 to 1140 and Aberdeen City Council is working with a range of early learning and childcare providers to ensure that parents/carers across the city can access these additional hours with maximum flexibility.”
Parents and carers are being encouraged to check the council’s website nearer the time for further details.
As part of getting facilities ready for the extra children, a number of schools across Aberdeen will have extensions or remodelling to allow for nurseries.
Holyrood ministers allocated more than £23m of funding to support the council’s expansion programme.
Focus Group Dates
January 20 – Rooms three and four, Mile End Community Centre for Aberdeen Grammar School ASG.
January 21 – Hazlehead Primary after-school club room for Hazlehead Academy ASG.
January 22 – Bucksburn Academy hall for Bucksburn and Dyce Academies as well as Orchard Brae School.
January 27 – Manor Park School community room for Northfield Academy ASG.
January 28 – Bridge of Don Academy hall for Bridge of Don/Oldmachar Academies.
January 29 – St Machar hall for St Machar Academy ASG.
February 3 – Kirkhill Primary for Lochside Academy ASG.
February 4 – Kaimhill Primary dining hall for Harlaw Academy ASG.
February 5 – Cults Primary dining hall for Cults Academy ASG.
All groups from 6.30-8pm.