Professor Nutbrown's interim report on early education and childcare qualifications was published today. Professor Nutbrown is considering a number of issues as she develops her recommendations for government.
In its official response to the call for evidence, Voice commented:
- "Sadly there is still the general perception that anyone can care for children, a perception which we do not and have not ever believed in. The childcare workforce should be highly qualified and professional they are often the first or amongst the first professionals that young children and their families will have experience of. They provide the first experience of formal childcare for children and their families.
- "To ensure that all early years and childcare experience is of the highest quality, providing the best role models, the childcare workforce must be qualified.
- "Requiring all those who work with children to hold a relevant qualification will support this with the general population, but can only be consolidated with a robust career structure which will promote respect from the general public.
- "Stop recruiting childcare workers informally through the playground, require all those working with children to be qualified and registered including nannies. The perception that those who work in domestic premises can fulfil this role without qualification or registration is damaging to the sector workforce and potentially to children too.
- "Make it a requirement that all those working with children and young people are required to have a formal qualification.
- "Raise the earning potential for the early years workforce so to attract a more diverse workforce, including more men.
- "There are not enough men in the workforce, probably because of lack of career structure and salary scale. High academic achievers are often directed to other professions or to teaching because of this."
"The early years are crucial to every child's development and it is essential that we have an early years system that meets the needs of children, families and professionals.
"The Government must ask itself how the childcare system can deliver, and recruit and retain a skilled and well-trained workforce, in the face of cuts to local authority services and the axe of closure and redundancy that hangs over children's centres and other early years settings, and the staff who work in them."
Do let us know your thoughts