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Inspiring a Future Generation

Amanda believes that our future is in our hands and we should all follow our hearts when it comes to choosing a career

31/03/2017

 

Back in April last year, I wrote about a crisis in childcare that was threatening our industry. Less people were entering the profession mainly because the government decided that child carers who wanted a qualification had to have at least a C grade in GCSE Maths and English. Colleges reported a massive dip in the uptake of school leavers wanting to study childcare. Childcare courses were dropped due to lack of interest and it became harder to find qualified child carers to fill the vacancies.

Change for the better

As a result a number of key players in the industry started to lobby the Government. Tinies was one of them. After many meetings, and frankly giving up much hope of a change, it was finally announced this month that the Government was dropping the GCSE requirement.

And it was a very welcome announcement. But has it come too late?

The Government is still pressing ahead with the 30 hours free entitlement (despite serious misgivings by nursery providers) which will see demand for nursery places increase. Yet there are not enough staff to meet that demand. So yes, it has probably come too late to fix the childcare crisis this year, or even over the next 2 years. But the U-turn will hopefully help for the future.

The future is in our hands

And that's what Tinies is concentrating on as well - the future. This week we launched our "Inspiring a Future in Childcare" campaign. The aim of the campaign is to raise awareness amongst children in school about the benefits of a career in childcare. What we hope to do is capture the interest of young adults in years 8, 9, and 10 and get them thinking about working with children, and how rewarding that choice of career can be.

Choosing a career

It brings back memories of when I was at school and attended a Careers Day. There was a speaker who talked about us becoming doctors, accountants and lawyers. Those were perceived as the "acceptable professions" in those days (or the Middle Ages as my son likes to call my school days) and there wasn't a whole lot said about other jobs. We then had to sit a test, and based on your answers, the computer then churned out a list of jobs that would be suitable. One of the jobs listed for me was bin man because I said I liked the outdoors. For those of my friends who said they liked children, the only job listed was "teacher".

Now if you want to work with children, there are so many options. You could work in a nursery, become a nanny, or be self-employed and work as a childminder. You could become a teacher, or do child psychology. You could become a midwife, or a paediatric nurse or doctor. You could set up a sports camp, run coding courses, or simply volunteer at a children's charity. The choices are endless.

The important thing is to do what you love, and in order to do that, we as the older generation need to remove any barriers stopping you from doing that. So thank you Government for listening, but we still have a long way to go.

Amanda Coxen, Working Mum and Tinies Director

 
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