2000 new jobs in childcare announced


A package of support to equip the childcare workforce to grow by around 2000 jobs and ensure high quality care of children has been announced today by the Finance Secretary John Swinney.

£3.5 million of additional support will be provided in 2014-15 to meet the extra demand for childcare places following yesterday’s £59 million package to extend childcare provision.

The extra funding will be invested in skills development and training places to support the high industry standards as well as boost the childcare workforce by creating new jobs in the sector.

The funding is part of the Scottish Government’s commitment to grow the economy and will help more women back into work.

Mr Swinney also set out in the debate why independence is essential to deliver the transformational childcare proposed in Scotland’s Future.

Finance Secretary John Swinney said:

“Yesterday, the First Minister announced a significant expansion of free school meals and childcare provision. Our commitment to first class childcare provision is based on analysis of its contribution to enhancing Scotland’s economy.

“The provision of high-quality childcare will help more parents return to work and has the potential to increase female participation in the labour market. Boosting participation and reducing the time a parent is inactive in the labour market due to childcare commitments will bring benefits in terms of skill levels, employability, education attainment, future earning potential and the overall productivity in the Scottish economy.

“Investment in childcare can also create jobs in the sector to meet increased demand. We are determined to ensure that the development of a skilled workforce can match the scale of our ambitions for childcare. This is why I am today announcing £3.5 million to support an additional 2,000 childcare workers, provide training and professional development to the sector.

“The Scottish Government is making economic choices based on what is best for the people of Scotland. We are saving families money by extending childcare provision while boosting family incomes by supporting more parents to work. We are enhancing opportunities and quality of life and what is most productive for Scotland’s economy – equipping it with the skilled workforce required for the 21st century.

“In contrast, Westminster has created one of the most unbalanced and unequal economies in the developed world where economic activity is concentrated in one part of the UK, manufacturing is neglected and a further £25 billion of budget cuts are proposed for the future.

“Those cuts show why Scotland needs independence to deliver the transformational level of childcare. Such a transformation cannot be funded on hand-outs from Westminster that can be taken away as easily as they can be given.

“With independence, the revenues from expanding childcare provision can be used to fund public services. For example, growing our four largest tax receipts by 1 per cent and reducing core welfare spending by 1 per cent – for example, by increasing the number of people in work – would increase revenues by £350 million. However, under the Scotland Act only £45 million of those revenues will accrue directly to Scotland.

“It is only with independence that we would be able to deliver a fully transformational approach – securing, and reinvesting the full returns from successful policy actions.”