Early Learning and Childcare

Early Learning and Childcare is changing, for the better!

The Scottish Government announced plans to expand Early Learning and Childcare across Scotland in 2016. A Blueprint for 2020 sets out plans to almost double early learning and childcare entitlement (from 600 to 1140 hours per year) for all 3 and 4 year olds and eligible 2 year olds in 2020. Things have moved on substantially since this document was published but the basic premise and values remain the same.

The closing date for 2020/2021 session applications was 13 March 2020.

However, any parent/carer who has not yet submitted a 3-5 Nursery Application form for this session can still do so by completing a nursery application form, attaching a copy of your current Council Tax bill and a copy of the child’s birth certificate. These can either be emailed to or posted to Early Learning & Childcare, 1st Floor Civic Square, Windmillhill Street, Motherwell, ML1 1TP.

Late applications will be offered a place once all applications received prior to the 13th March have been offered a place.

Use the links below to identify your nursery choices and access the application form.

Latest News

Latest update on expansion timetable

After a lengthy period of uncertainty during the coronavirus lockdown, we are currently on track to deliver our 1140 hour programme by September, with some eligible children starting in August. We know how important the expanded programme is for everyone involved and we now have a plan in place which is set out in clear stages.

The current stage is all about delivering critical child care over the summer holidays to vulnerable children and those of key workers. It is then hoped that from Tuesday 11 August the children of key workers (aged from birth the 5 years) will be offered 1140 hours provision subject to compliance with rules laid down by the Scottish Government.

The safety of children and staff will always be the council’s top priority so the full roll-out of the 1140 programme can’t and won’t happen until it is safe and practical to do so. This will be based on our ability to implement arrangements which meet the national standards for Phase Three (Recovery) and subject to revised planning restrictions being in place.

Key workers will continue to receive 1140 hours in August. The roll out of lunch provision for eligible children will also continue in August and as before, funded providers will receive lunches or payments (previous arrangements will apply) for eligible children on the days they attend.

Once all eligible children return to their sessions in August, your nursery, centre or childminder will confirm the increase in hours to parents and carers.