Parents of young children in the Borders have been reassured that plans are in place to guarantee childcare for two-year-olds this August.
Hundreds of children in the Borders will be heading off to nursery school after the summer holidays thanks to the increase in nursery places for tw0-year-olds.
Despite political bickering over the government plans, a council spokesman has stressed that: “Scottish Borders Council have an implementation plan in place to deliver the additional childcare provision from August 2014.”
The cost of the Scottish Government’s promise to provide 600 hours of care for some children under two, focussing on those in non-working households, had proved higher than expected.
The costs of delivering the policy nationally have already increased by a third, to £61 million, and the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities has estimated it could be as high as £114 million.
Organisations such as Sunrise Nursery at the Southfield Community Centre in Duns are now preparing for a possible influx of youngsters.
Mum Rachel Hunter said: “My son attends Sunrise Nursery and I am also on the committee.
“We recently secured funding from SPPA which has allowed us to employ a sessional worker to help with the increase in provision for two-year-olds and are awaiting word from the Big Lottery Fund on a grant to help us fund two sessional workers next year to help extend our service to deliver this provision - funded and unfunded.”
Local MP Michael Moore said: “This is great news for parents who know that their child is getting the best possible start in life.