He said, “We want to see Apprenticeships become the new norm for all ambitious young people, and employers who are dedicated to growing their own talent and increasing the skills base of the nation.”
Early Years is one of the five sectors to join the government’s second Round of the ‘Trailblazers’
The Trailblazers initiative grew out of the review of apprenticeships conducted by former Dragon’s Den entrepreneur Doug Richard. Because the reforms, designed to make apprenticeships more rigorous and responsive to employer needs, are so wide-ranging, the government has launched Trailblazers to test the concept and to create models of effective practice before full adoption in 2017/18.
Cheryl Hadland, the Managing Director of Tops Day Nurseries, who chairs the Early Years leadership group, said: “This is an exciting opportunity to influence the knowledge and competence that we need from those who look after young children in nurseries and pre-schools, at child-minders and in other settings”.
Ross Midgley, one of the employers in the group said, “In many ways the timing is excellent, since the group is coming into being just as new early years education qualifications are being implemented. In the interests of children, we must ensure that the sector has adequate numbers of staff. Any changes which might act as a barrier to recruitment must be considered very carefully. Our group will be consulting employers, both large and small, to identify what is essential and what is desirable.”
The leadership group comprises childcare and education employers from single nurseries to major national chains, as well as training providers and national organisations representing thousands of settings nationwide. Awarding Bodies, other employers and national organisations in the sector are advising and being consulted by the leadership group. The Trailblazers initiative will be launched at a reception at 10 Downing Street on Thursday 6 March.
Chair: Cheryl Hadland, Tops Day Nurseries; Cheryl.hadland@
Ross Midgley, Blois Meadow Day Nursery;
Chris Pritchard, Jancett Childcare;
Gillian Fawcett, Puffins of Exeter;
Chrissie Muleady, Sheffield Children’s Centre;
Susan McGee, Bertram Nursery Group;
Michael Freeston Pre-School Learning Alliance
Stella Ziolowski, National Day Nursery Association;
Nicola Amies, Bright Horizons Family Solutions