By Jim King
Responding to new figures from the Care Inspectorate showing that in 2021 there were fewer early learning and childcare (ELC) services operating than in 2020 and that childminding places in Scotland have fallen by more than 10,000 in five years.
Scottish Liberal Democrat education spokesperson Willie Rennie, right, said: “It’s troubling to see the number of early learning and childcare services decreasing.
“These services can be truly transformative for parents and kids but if services are not available locally at hours that fit around people’s busy lives then they are no service at all.
“The expansion of early learning and childcare was supposed to give parent’s choice. I don’t think that “take it or leave it” is much of a choice.
“The Scottish Government need to increase the rates that are paid to private and third sector childcare providers to match those in council settings. This would help to turn the tide on providers fleeing the industry.”