Renfrewshire Council

Four toddlers chat with a nursery officer as they learn about cooking and eating round the kitchen table at St Margaret's Early Learning and Childcare Class in Johnstone.

Nursery expansion is improving children's speech and reading levels

Children are already benefiting from additional hours at Renfrewshire's nurseries following early access to 1140 hours of Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) at some nurseries.

Almost 1,600 three and four-year-olds and eligible two-year-olds across the region are now receiving 1140 hours ELC and parental feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.

One nursery's experience

At St Margaret's Early Learning and Childcare Class in Johnstone, parents said 1140 hours ELC had a positive impact on their child's development. 

Around 50 children at the nursery class have been able to take early access to 1140 hours ELC during the last year or so.

Headteacher Gillian Miller said it's been positive to trial 1140 hours ELC within St Margaret's Early Learning and Childcare Class. She said: "High-quality early learning experiences are vitally important to support children's development. Our nursery class focuses on supporting children's development and learning through play experiences."

Children at St Margaret's nursery in Johnstone pretend to work at a greengrocer

When can I get 1140 hours of ELC?

All children are currently entitled to 600 hours of nursery provision in council-run and funded private and voluntary providers, however a number of nurseries have been able to offer earlier access to the extended childcare ahead of the Scottish Government deadline of August 2020.

Most nurseries will have to wait until their building has been refurbished, extended or newly-built. We are recruiting staff in line with our building works schedule.

How many staff members have been recruited?

The council has now recruited around 200 early years staff to support the 1140 ELC expansion and existing provision in nurseries across Renfrewshire, including nine modern apprentices and 23 graduates.

Training and development opportunities are available for current and future early years staff working in council and approved provider settings to help them progress on their career pathway, such as SVQs, leadership courses and development centres. There is also funding support to meet Scottish Social Services Council registration required for jobs in early years.

St Margaret's nursery kids playing in a home environment

Where are you with refurbishing the nursery buildings?

Refurbishment work at nine nursery centres and classes has already been completed and the final 17 are all on track for completion on their target date.

Where can I find out more information?

You can read more about the 1140 hours expansion programme in Renfrewshire, our recruitment and more on building works at selected nurseries on our 1140 Early Learning and Childcare webpages.

Published on Tuesday 29 October 2019.

Pictured: Nursery officers and children at St Margaret's Early Learning and Childcare Class in Johnstone.