Temporary Childcare for Essential Workers

Managing care for children of Keyworkers

30.07.20 Update - Council keyworker childcare hubs to come to an end

Highland Council’s provision of childcare for keyworkers will cease on 10 August at the latest, depending on the circumstances of each location. This is in line with current Scottish Government advice and hubs will contact individuals currently using this service with further guidance.

We would like to thank everyone who has worked with us and attended our keyworker childcare hubs since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. We set up keyworker childcare hubs in Highland in response to the rapidly escalating coronavirus outbreak in March 2020, when the Scottish Government made the decision to close all schools and Local Authority Early Learning and Childcare settings.

During this period of closure, we opened up to 15 Keyworker Childcare Hubs with additional support from partners, in order to provide emergency childcare for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year, to ensure that key workers had continuing access to appropriate childcare. During the summer, the Highland Council area key worker hub network saw provision of childcare be provided across in excess of 50 different settings, for around 400 children of Highland area keyworker parents and carers.


14.07.20 Update - Keyworker childcare hubs

As the Scottish Government continues to ease lockdown, parents now have other possibilities for childcare over the summer.

Keyworker parents should source provision with their own normal providers which from the 15 July should now be available due to the relaxing of lockdown measures.

The Highland Council will offer a childcare hub service across the Highland area, for category 1 Keyworkers over the summer who have no access to alternative childcare, in order to undertake their critical work.

This offer of childcare is being provided by Highland Council staffed hubs in Millburn Academy in Inverness and Newton Park Primary School in Wick, and additionally at the Averon Centre in Alness and in a range of Partner Provider and Childminding services across Highland.

Category 1 Keyworkers

In line with national guidance, Category 1 Keyworkers are defined as the following:

Category 1 - Health and Care workers directly supporting COVID response, and associated staff; Health and Care workers supporting life threatening emergency work, as well as critical primary and community care provision; Energy suppliers (small numbers identified as top priority already); staff providing childcare/learning for other category 1 staff.

Please note that prioritisation will be given to Health and Care workers directly supporting the COVID response.

See also, Scottish Government Keyworker category definitions.