Local authority funding
The local government change funding was a combination of new and existing resources and was not aligned to any specific programmes. Each local authority made decisions on how to allocate these resources in line with their own local priorities.
Funding and spend from local authority
|Funding provided for 2012-2015||Spend reported by CPPs in returns for 2012-2015*|
*As in the previous sections, the figure presented in the reported spend for 2012-2015 column in the table above is taken from figures supplied in Annex A in the 2014/15 returns. This amount includes local authority change fund activity and activity over and above the planned investment from local government.
A very wide range of different programmes were supported with several CPPs able to provide returns on over 20 separate lines of spend; these fell under three main headings:
- General family support, for example play or literacy services.
- Targeted support such as support for vulnerable families.
- Staffing, workforce development and training.
CPPs were also asked to give information on local authority activity over and above the local government's planned investment and again were able to provide information on a wide range of programmes under similar headings.
Examples of these programmes are given below.
General family support
Examples of family support provided through local government and other funding included:
- Play and activity initiatives such as a Toy Library, Gym Teds, Stay & Play sessions and active start toddler groups. Funds were also used to refurbish play areas.
- Health-related initiatives for both children and parents such as the provision of healthy breakfasts or Mums on the Run.
- Learning initiatives including early years drama and dance and Bookbugs.
- East Dunbartonshire provides: Programmes of activity such as Music Machine, Mini Movers, Wee Beasties and Story Stars. These activities are delivered in venues across East Dunbartonshire and support a range of outcomes. As well as facilitating parent/child bonding and improving parental skills and confidence, activities offer opportunities to develop skills such as hand to eye co-ordination, listening and talking, and provide the building blocks of early literacy and numeracy skills.
Spend also included:
- Parenting programmes including Triple P.
- Additional nursery places and the provision of high quality child care.
- Purchasing equipment and resources for early years services.
- Development of community information strategies and resources linked to Early Childhood Networks and community led action plans (East Ayrshire).
- Investment in Family Centres and the provision of new Family Centres, for example: Development of 4 Early Years Centres in most deprived areas in Scottish Borders. These are attached to Primary Schools in these areas.
Support was provided for many different groups including:
- Children and families affected by disability. This ranged from play-schemes to behaviour support services. Highland provided: Physiotherapy surveillance service for children with Cerebral Palsy to prevent hip dislocation.
- Families with kinship care arrangements.
- Children with learning difficulties.
- Families struggling to deal with challenging behaviour.
- Vulnerable young mothers.
- Vulnerable children, including in Glasgow: Nurture Corners within 20 GCC nurseries continued to offer support to the most vulnerable children. A total of 90 children were supported during 2014/15. The nurture corners in early years programme was awarded The Herald Education Initiative of the year for 2014. All staff in 112 GCC early years establishments were trained in the principles of nurture during 2014.
- Families at risk of isolation: As Argyll and Bute is a rural local authority, some parents require transport to ensure their child accesses ELCC. This reduces the risk of isolation.
Staffing, workforce development and training
Examples of additional staff provided through local government and other funding included:
- Staffing for early years programme management and support
- Early Years Teachers
- Senior Early Years Practitioners
- Early Intervention Assistants
- Educational Psychologists
- Speech and Language Therapists
CPPs reported on training for a range of staff and also reported on activity designed to build capacity and capability, as well as employed staff this also included recruiting more foster carers.
In some areas, teams have been realigned or integrated in order to provide improved support.
Examples included Perth and Kinross: This social work team has undergone a significant realignment of function to focus on earlier intervention to reduce the need for children to be subject to compulsory measures of care. This includes provision of individual support and groupwork interventions and an outreach function that provides services in a range of localities across Perth and Kinross. It engages with pregnant women and new parents to support attachment and child development, to deliver parenting programmes (Incredible Babies and Infant Massage) and elements of the Healthy Start programme through groups to support weaning and the development of cooking skills.
Email: Steven Fogg, email@example.com