Early Learning and Childcare Service Model for 2020: Consultation Paper

Closed 29 Jun 2018

Opened 29 Mar 2018

Results updated 31 Oct 2018

Publication of the Analysis Report of the responses to the joint Scottish Government and COSLA consultation on the new Early Learning and Childcare service model for 2020.


Published responses

View submitted responses where consent has been given to publish the response.


In order to ensure that the funded early learning and childcare entitlement is delivered in high quality settings we will introduce a new, and more progressive, service model in 2020. This will be built on a Funding Follows the Child approach, a key aspect of which will be a ‘National Standard’ that all providers wishing to deliver the funded entitlement will have to meet.

The Scottish Government, COSLA and local authorities have worked in partnership, through a Service Models Working Group, to develop the details of this new model. This has included engagement with providers and key stakeholders since October 2017 so that we can ensure that this new model works for everyone in the sector and helps to improve the early learning and childcare experience for our young children.

This paper sets out the Funding Follows the Child approach and seeks views on the proposed National Standard that underpins it. The National Standard sets out the clear and consistent criteria that all providers who wish to deliver the funded entitlement will have to meet from 2020.

Why your views matter

The introduction of this new approach represents a substantial change for the early learning and childcare sector in Scotland.

We want to ensure that everyone in the sector, including families, can provide their views on the new model. We want to hear these views and that is why we are now consulting jointly with COSLA on the proposed National Standard.

Download the consultation paper.

What happens next

Following consideration of the consultation responses we will set out the final version of the Funding Follows the Child approach and the National Standard in Autumn 2018. 

To support providers and local authorities in implementing the new model, and to ensure that families have clear information, we will work closely with delivery partners (in particular through the Service Models Working Group) to develop a suite of operational guidance and supporting information to be published alongside the final version of the model in Autumn 2018.


  • Children and Families
  • Communities and Third Sector
  • Public Sector
  • Work and Skills