Presbytery has an Education Working Group that has recently been active in voicing concerns about changes by Highland Council to class room assistants. Teachers are hard enough pressed without reducing their support. Here are copies of the letters sent and received. Presbytery is not convinced cutting back in early years is such a good idea but that it causes problems further down the line. This thinking has been backed up by recent research carried out in England around the Sure Start programme.
There's a story about people watching other people being swept down a river and a huge rescue attempt going on. Eventually, someone thought to look upstream for the cause of the problem. That's what early years support and Sure Start does - it looks upstream to the source of the problem and addresses those issues to stop a disaster later on. Such a shame the various authorities have not taken heed of the research! It's not rocket science!!!
What can be done by people of faith? Voice concern to whichever authority backs the programmes. Be pro-active in helping local schools, even if it means filling in paperwork of PVG or similar (it may be a hassle but it's not complicated), so that you are able to help. Get to know your community and volunteer with programmes that seek to help others, get to know the families around you and offer to help them.