There were 6,019 staff members working 5,289 full-time equivalent jobs in December 2014, a 3.3% increase from the previous year and a larger number than ever before. At the same time 19,938 children attended pre-primary schools, more than ever before in Iceland. The number of pre-school children increased by 225 from December 2013, or by 1.1%. The increase was greatest among one year old children; from 34.0% to 41.2% of the age group. Almost 86% of 1-5 year old children attended pre-primary education, the highest proportion ever.

The number of children receiving special support increased from the previous year
In December 2014, 1,524 children received special support because of a handicap or social or emotional difficulties, a total of 7.6% of all pre-school children. This is an increase of 324 children from the previous year (27.0%). Only once before has the proportion of children receiving special support been greater than 7%, in 2009 when 7.3% of children received special support. As in previous years boys are more numerous among children receiving support, 1,031 boys (68%) and 493 girls (32%) received support in 2014.

The number of children with foreign origin continues to increase
Statistics Iceland has collected data on pre-school children’s citizenship since 2001. In 2001, 159 children had foreign citizenship, 1.0% of children in pre-primary schools, but 1,234 children in December 2014; 6.2%.
At the same time the number of children with a foreign mother tongue had increased from 755 (4.8% of pre-school children) to 2,197 (11.0% of pre-school children).

The data on citizenship for 2001-2007 are not totally comparable to data from 2008, since they are based on a different source.

Fewer licenced pre-primary school teachers
Although the number of staff has increased in recent years, the number of licenced pre-primary school teachers decreased by 124 (6.3%) from December 2013, and in December 2014 there were 1,836 licenced pre-primary school teachers in pre-primary schools in Iceland. The number of licenced pre-primary school teachers in their thirties has decreased by 160 in the past five years. Licenced pre-primary school teachers were 33.3% of staff working in education and childcare in December 2014, down from 36.8% in the previous year.
The number of staff working with children with special needs increased by 39 (9.5%) from the previous year, at the same time as the number of children receiving support increased considerably.

Fewer pre-primary schools
There were 255 pre-primary schools operating in Iceland in December 2014, one less than in the previous year. A total of 220 schools were operated by the municipalities while 35 were run by others. The number of pre-primary schools was greatest in 2009, when there were 282 schools operating.



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