6.8.06

Childcare Standards

Illiterate nursery staff discussing their nights out drinking in front of toddlers risk creating a generation of "Vicky Pollards" - I really wish I could disagree with this statement, but I can't. When I was younger I had a part time job cleaning a day care centre (as well as having a close relative who spent many years as a childcare worker), and pretty much everything said in this article is bang on correct. The people most likely to go into that line of work are undereducated, undersupported in their efforts to improve this state of being, highly pressured (both in and out of work) and lack a lot of behavioural self-restraint (ie: chatting about unsuitable topics, calling in sick, quitting without any thought as to how this will affect the children around them). That's not to say they don't care about the children they look after, but that's not enough to be a (paid for) positive role model.

She went on to suggest minimum entry requirements for childcare workers: "childcare workers should be expected to have passed GCSEs in maths and English at grade C or better... Trainees should also face rigorous interviews to establish whether they know what the job will involve." And I agree with this completely - it's important that parents know they are handing their children over to hard working, highly disciplined, well educated (not private schooled, but just someone with a good range of demonstrated knowledge) individuals. Not to mention raising the bar a little for the people who choose childcare as a career. A little hard work never hurt anyone.