Council stands by its commitment to help families.

Families First, Renfrewshire Council’s flagship initiative to improve the lives for local children is set to receive an additional £2.5million per year.

The extra cash means the work taking place to improve access to services for the families that need them most can continue into 2018.


Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Education Policy Board, Councillor Jacqueline Henry said: “It’s absolutely vital that our children get the best possible start in life if we are to break the cycle of deprivation that affects far too many families in Renfrewshire.

“We are putting funding into improving the things that impact on a child’s early development.

“We are increasing the number of teachers in our nurseries and putting increased emphasis on the transition to primary school. By developing a more nurturing approach our aim is to ensure our children ready and fully equipped to start learning so that they continue to progress in life.

“We’re investing in parents too, who need to be able to support their child’s development through positive reinforcement at home.

“If we can achieve better outcomes for families it’s better for our children and better for the future of Renfrewshire.”

The council’s Early Years Strategy was approved in March 2013. This latest announcement takes the council’s commitment to early intervention to almost £14 million over five years.

In the past 12 months the council has increased the number of teachers in its nurseries by 50%, changed its policies to reduce exclusion rates for children in care and supported a number of voluntary groups to increase their services in key locations.

Two teams have also been set up to provide on the ground support for families with young children. Working out of Woodlands Primary School in Linwood and Glencoats Primary School in Ferguslie, the teams have helped 152 families, through self-referral, to get the support available to them.

Families that would otherwise struggle to access council services can now get information on benefits and debt advice, get help with finding and joining a local community group or take part in a range of free parenting classes.

The council continues to be the only authority in Scotland to provide free school meals during the holidays for children of nursery age up to P3, who depend on this service during term-time. Delivered via its Families First activity clubs, invites have gone out to 1,100 families across Renfrewshire encouraging them to take advantage of this service during the forthcoming spring break.

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