06 March 2024

New out of school care lets approved from August

Aberdeenshire Council has provisionally approved lets applications for out of school care providers across nine council-owned settings from August.

Following a decision last month to stop direct delivery of out of school care, the council’s Education and Children’s Services (ECS) has been engaging with the private, voluntary, and independent (PVI) sectors to support them developing out of school care across Aberdeenshire.

Aberdeenshire Council’s ECS Chair Cllr David Keating said: “Since the beginning of February, officers have continued to engage with the PVI sector and I’m very pleased that we can now confirm that Aberdeenshire Council have provisionally approved lets for nine new out of school care services in council-owned space.

“All providers that have applied for space have been contacted and will need to submit the required documentation for final approval. Once approved, the organisations and groups will then provide information for parents and carers directly.”

The decision to stop direct delivery affected clubs in Balmedie, Banchory, Bervie, Ellon, Mintlaw, Pitmedden, Portlethen, and Westhill. 

The new lets for out of school care in council-owned space that have been agreed are:
•    Balmedie (one provider/setting)
•    Banchory (two providers and two settings)
•    Bervie (one provider/setting)
•    Ellon (two providers and two settings)
•    Pitmedden (one provider/setting)
•    Portlethen (one provider/setting)
•    Westhill (one provider/setting with another provider exploring alternative spaces)

It is hoped that the continued work supporting the development of further provision across Aberdeenshire will help address the shortage of out of school care, for example, where there are currently no providers operating, such as in Peterhead, Fraserburgh and Turriff.

Vice chair of ECS Cllr Anne Simpson added: “I’m very pleased that within a month we have been able to support the PVI sector in bringing provision to these areas.

“We are aware of additional new provision being planned within non-council premises, and our officers continue to have discussions with providers interested in taking lets in other areas of Aberdeenshire, including Mintlaw.”