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Scotland needs around 11,000 new childcare practitioners if it is to meet the Scottish Government’s pledge to provide 30 hours of free childcare to disadvantaged two-to four-year-olds of working parents by 2020. The childcare sector has a huge gender imbalance with only two per cent of the nursery workforce being men. This compares to seven per cent in Portugal and 23 per cent in Denmark.
West Lothian College has been awarded £22,600 by the Scottish Funding Council to support a Men in Early Years project to help address the gender imbalance in the early learning and childcare workforce. The Men in Early Years project hopes to both help meet the need for new practitioners and address this imbalance by increasing the number of men applying for and successfully completing Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) registered qualifications in early learning and childcare.
West Lothian College blended the creation of a forest classroom created entirely of recycled material alongside the promotion of men into childcare to enhance recruitment and showcase the males currently studying childcare at West Lothian College.
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