Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

Models of early learning and childcare

Suspension of 1140 hours early learning and childcare plans

In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, legislation was laid in the Scottish Parliament on 30 March 2020 to remove the statutory duty on education authorities to make 1140 hours of early learning and childcare (ELC) available to each eligible child from August 2020. Read our press release for more information.

Models of early learning and childcare

In East Ayrshire, there are three main models of delivery.

All models of delivery include the option to have a combination of Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) between two centres or a blended model with a participating childminder who meet the National Standard. A meal is provided with all models.

  • Model 1: 1140 hours across 38 weeks (term time, for example 9am to 3pm) and is available in both term time and full year services. Please note these places in full year services are limited.
  • Model 2: 1140 hours - the Block Model: a block is 4 hours 45 minutes: 8am-12.45pm or 1.15pm -6pm. Available in full year services only.

    Model 2 can be taken as five blocks per week over 48 weeks  in mornings, afternoons or a combination of two full days and one half day, or six blocks per week term time taken as three whole days.
  • Model 3: 1140 hours - The Blended Model or Split placement provides combination ELC packages of time in an Early Childhood Centre (ECC) or funded provider and with a participating childminder - a Blended Model or in an ECC and with a funded provider - a split placement.

Parents/carers can also access their child’s funded hours as a shared placement between an early childhood centre and a funded provider (split placement) which includes childminders (blended model). Using a combination of time between two different settings provides a flexible service that gives parents/carers the choice of early learning and childcare that fit around their family’s needs. Parents/carers can also have the option to privately fund additional hours with those funded providers or childminders if their childcare needs exceed 1140 hours.

Blended model – childminders

We are also keen to include a blended model of ELC which offers a combination of ELC with a participating registered childminder and either an early childhood centre or a funded provider. To confirm if your childminder is participating in this model or for more information about the blended model, please contact East Ayrshire Community Childcare Team Tel No: 01563 554980 or email

When applying for a blended model with a childminder, applications should be returned to your first choice of early childhood centre or funded provider. A separate application does not need to be submitted to the childminder but parents should negotiate the split of the placement with the participating childminder and the early childhood centre or funded provider.

For the 9am to 3pm pattern of hours and with a blended model; where the blend is on a daily basis (i.e some time with a participating childminder and in the early childhood centre (ECC) or funded provider (FP) each day) attendance of three hours at the ECC and FP is expected. This amount of time allows your child to settle in and become fully engaged in the opportunities available.

Split placement between two centres

If you wish to apply for a split placement between two centres you will need to make an application to each setting.

Please be aware that although every effort will be made to meet your needs, there is no guarantee that it will be possible to offer split funded places in every case.

The allocation of split places will be dependent on both settings being able to offer the hours requested.

Contact Information

Education Service - Early Years
Civic Centre South
16 John Dickie Street

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