Call for better nursery provision

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The lack of nursery provision in Craiagvaon was on the agenda for local DUP politicians in what they described as a ‘robust meeting’ with the SELB

DUP MP David Simpson, and MLAs Stephen Moutray and Sydney Anderson with the SELB concerning the shortfall in nursery places.

Mr Moutray said: “There is a distinct lack of nursery provision in the Craigavon area.

“This is unacceptable particularly when suggestions are made by the Board for children to travel miles to a nursery when there is a nursery unit on their doorstep.

“I believe firmly there needs to be a two pronged approach to resolving this matter the first being a change in the criteria which is implemented by the Department of Education around benefit claimants having priority over working families.

“I believe there should be equality and that everyone should be treated in the same when being considered for nursery.

“I am endeavouring to progress this matter at a Stormont level with the Department.

“Additionally I believe there needs to be greater flexibility in intakes within the statutory provision so as to cope with the changing demographics and birthing rate within areas.

“As a delegation we have asked for an overall scoping study to be carried out of the area and the provision that is available and will be working with the Board and Department to tackle this escalating problem.”