This is the first skills report for the Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) sector.
Its purpose is to provide the skills evidence base for the sector and support the workforce to fuel its expansion and provide high quality, flexible and accessible childcare across Scotland. The report:
describes the scale and characteristics of the sector and the types of provision within it
provides a profile of its workforce and how it varies between private, voluntary and public providers
presents the skills challenges and issues facing the sector in light of the drivers affecting change, most notably the expansion of free entitlement to early learning and childcare
creates direction and brings focus to the responses required by the public and private sector skills systems, and employers to address the skills priorities identified
provides a framework for investment and targeting of resources to develop responsive skills provision that meets the needs of this rapidly changing sector
sets a clear direction of travel for skills development for the period to 2020 when the entitlement to free early learning and childcare increases to 1,140 hours per year for all three and four year olds and eligible two year olds.
This Prospectus presents a strategy and high level action plan to attract a more diverse workforce in to the ELC sector and ensure the current and future workforce have the skills required to provide quality care and impact positively on the outcomes for Scotland’s children. It aims to contribute to the professionalisation of the workforce and encourage positive perceptions of the sector as a career destination offering development and progression opportunities.
It builds on the positive working relationships between partners on the skills supply side and those on the demand side, including employers and organisations that represent their interests. It recognises that in recent years, the qualifications levels of ELC staff have increased sharply and have never been higher.
-reprinted from Skills Development Scotland