It seems there is never a slow news day in early years these days and today has been no exception. It started with the news report on the DfE’s lack of response to some very pertinent questions regarding the funding consultation and Dr Jo Verill from Ceeda calling for an independent review after revealing some very worrying assumptions having been made by the government in their recent funding review.
This was followed by Save the Children’s news release that toddlers should be being taught by teachers. This caused some debate and discussion on both BBC Breakfast with Jennie Johnson from Kids Allowed and on ITV’s Good Morning Britain with Angela Spencer from Angels at Play both fighting our corners from different perspectives. Whilst no-one disagreed that better qualifications can support children’s progress, the call for teachers in nurseries is not even a new idea, I seem to recall this (graduate-led settings) was a target to be achieved by 2015 from a previous government. However, the point made was that we, as a country, need to invest in our current workforce, we need practitioners who know and understand child development, not school teachers who learn little about this in their training. We also need practitioners who understand about all aspects of caring for children and not ones who only look at their brains as Save the Children advocate. Therefore, the call must be for government to fund the early years sector adequately enough now to allow for this to happen, to not cheat us with their apparently shady reviews, and to not underfund in the future. As they declare, they are ‘our biggest customers’ and we need to call on them to do the right thing and ensure our fairer funding review is truly fair and based on current and up to date figures and information, and to consider the impact of the planned rise of NLW in 2020. None of this seems to be happening at the moment and there are many day nursery owners who have had enough of being treated this way.
Which brings me to the other news story that is spreading like wildfire on social media at present, that of a campaign started by a group of dissatisfied day nursery own their own words:
Nursery owners are exhausted with the constant negative media messages. Nurseries across the UK have come together to express how they feel.
Petitions are not working! Letters are not working!
Nurseries need to get their voices heard. Now is the time for something new.
Let’s get our voices heard! This is just the beginning of the campaign Champagne Nurseries Lemonade Funding!
And so another busy day in early years comes to a close and I’m left wondering when I will ever find time to fit in the day job !
About the author: Tricia Wellings
Her passion for and knowledge of owning and running a nursery group and the issues within the sector that affect them is second to none. She continues to keep herself updated through regular meetings with PVI groups, Local Authorities, Ofsted Big Conversation and Conferences.
You can find our more about Tricia on her website www.triciawellings.co.uk