Nicola Sturgeon to set out plans for wraparound childcare and free early years education

Nicola Sturgeon is to lay out plans for wraparound childcare available all year round and free early years education to be extended to all one and two-year-olds.

The First Minister will announce that an SNP government will extend childcare to before and after school, throughout the year.

Those on the lowest incomes will pay nothing.

Ms Sturgeon is to say: “The last year has been extraordinarily tough on families, and as we build a sustainable recovery from Covid-19, we need to do everything we can to support them.

“In government, the SNP has been investing massively in the next generation – from the baby box to the rollout of free school meals or our flagship Scottish Child Payment – and in fact the biggest capital investment made in the last term was in our massive expansion of childcare provision.

“Despite the logistical challenges thrown up over the last year, I am pleased that we will complete the expansion of free, high-quality childcare to 1,140 hours by August of this year.

“But that is not the limit of our ambitions. We will build a year-round system of ‘wraparound’ childcare, which will provide care before and after school. We’ll ensure that those on the lowest incomes pay nothing, with others making a fair and affordable contribution.

“For many, this will make the difference between not being able to afford to work because of high childcare costs and being able to work or work longer, raising family incomes as a result.”

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