1. This statutory guidance is issued under section 34 of the Standards in Scotland's Schools Act 2000 (the 2000 Act) which empowers Scottish Ministers to issue guidance to education authorities on the exercise of their functions in relation to the delivery of early learning and childcare. This statutory guidance applies from 1 August 2021.
2. This guidance will replace previous guidance and circulars; and should be read in connection with the legislation to which it relates.
3. The main part of the statutory guidance follows the provisions as set out in Part 6 of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014, as it is through these functions that early learning and childcare is defined. To complement this the document also sets out additional guidance on key related legislation and policy that are out-with the scope of section 34 of the 2000 Act under which this statutory guidance is issued.