SNP Leader Nicola Sturgeon pledged on Saturday that an SNP Government will be “more determined than ever to make Scotland the best place in the world to grow up”.

She unveiled policies designed to help children and families through the pandemic and into the recovery.

Key policies an SNP Government will support include:

  • A free laptop or device for every pupil, together with a free internet connection
  • Providing free school breakfasts and lunches, year-round, to every primary school pupil – as well as for children in state-funded special schools.
  • Building on the Outdoor Community Play Fund, a £60m investment to renew every play park in Scotland. 
  • Maintaining the provision of the Baby Box to all of Scotland’s new children, and explore ways that it can be used to further promote women’s health and support parental mental health. 
  • Doubling the Scottish Child Payment and continuing the Best Start Grants – the Pregnancy and Baby Payment, the Early Learning Payment and the School Age Payment – as well as increasing the Best Start Food payment to £4.50 per week and increasing eligibility by around 50% to all in receipt of Universal Credit.

Speaking on a visit to a park in Glasgow today, Nicola Sturgeon said: “Whether it’s the baby box, the Best Start payments, the Scottish Child Payment or our massive expansion in childcare provision – the SNP government has been investing enormously in Early Years. If re-elected we will build on our record with even more ambitious policies that will have far-reaching benefits. 

“We’ve already ensured that every P1-P3 child has year-round access to free school meals – and if re-elected we’ll provide free school breakfasts and lunches to every primary school pupil in Scotland, year round.

“To break down barriers to learning and give every child a fair chance, we’ll provide every pupil with their own laptop or device, and a free internet connection. 

“And backed by a £60m fund, we’ll put in place a plan to renew every play park in Scotland, so that all children have access to a place to play in their own community. After a year in which many children have not had access to a garden, this investment has never been more important. 

“The last year has been incredibly tough for children and young people across Scotland, and by giving both votes to the SNP in this election, people will be electing an SNP Government more determined than ever to make Scotland the best place in the world to grow up – and to put the tools for our recovery in Scotland’s hands.”

Labour MSP for South Scotland, Colin Smyth says it is dishonest of the SNP to claim this will do much more than scratch the surface – explaining that one park n his constituency cost £2 million to refurbish: