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Alex Salmond must explain why 24,000 two year olds won't benefit from free nursery places

February 7, 2013 2:42 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie MSP has called upon theWillie RennieWillie Rennie First Minister to explain to 24,000 mothers across Scotland why their two-year-old children will not benefit from free nursery places.

This comes after the First Minister failed to explain why the Liberal Democrats plans were not reflected in the Scottish Government's budget passed in Holyrood this week.

Commenting after First Ministers Questions, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie MSP said:

"Alex Salmond needs to explain to the 24,000 mothers across Scotland why their two-year-old child will not benefit from a free nursery place. Scottish Liberal Democrats put forward these plans as they are costed, reasonable and would yield rewards for the economy of today and tomorrow.

"It's disappointing that the First Minister cannot set out why he will not extend free nursery places. In England, forty percent of two year olds will benefit from free nursery education. That figure is only 1 percent in Scotland. A gap in provision could lock in a gap in attainment and I do not want Scotland's children to be left behind.

"Family Nurse Partnerships can work in harmony with free nursery places. Alex Salmond should explain to mothers why his government is yet to give families this significant opportunity which could benefit their two year old and allow them to return to work.

"I hope families will make their point to the First Minister and help us to build a stronger economy and a fairer society."