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Policy background - Parenting

The National Parenting Strategy  values parents as one of the single biggest ways of giving children the best start in life and sets out to support them in their role . The term parents refers to anyone with a parenting role for children of all ages from the early years right through the teenage years and into young adults.

It aims to make it easier for parents to understand the positive difference they can make to their child's development, help parents to feel confident in their ability to care for their children, feel reassured that help is available if and when they need support and ultimately making parenting an even more rewarding experience.

This supports the principles set out in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), that all children have the right to safe, stable, stimulating and nurturing relationships with parents that develop resilience and a sense of security and trust in the relationship.

In Scotland, The Early Years Framework was developed according to the vision and principles of the UNCRC. It further identifies that in order to enact transformational change throughout early years services parents must be:

  • Given appropriate support to help them understand the responsibilities and sustained commitment associated with bringing up a child and to develop the skills needed to provide a nurturing and stimulating home environment free from conflict.
  • Given access to world-class antenatal, maternity and postnatal care that meets their individual needs.
  • Involved in their children’s learning and given learning opportunities that will help them support their child’s learning and development.
  • Supported to access employment and training to help reduce the risk of child poverty, including through the provision of flexible, accessible and affordable childcare.
  • Provided with integrated support from services to meet a range of needs they and their children may have. This includes help for parents to develop a positive relationship with their child and to address stresses which may impact on their ability to perform their parenting role.