Recently there’s been increase of online and distance courses, giving students the impression that they hold a proper qualification and they will be able to work as qualified personnel in the nursery or school.
The name of the courses can be very misleading for example; Level 3 Early Years, Diploma, Level 3 in Early Years, Early Years Qualification and so on. Many training providers are not telling the students the fact that the qualification does not provide a licence to practice. However, there are some that do inform the students, while others say that the qualification will assist with future employment prospects. This can be very misleading to those potential students.
Moreover there are now a number of childcare courses available, under recognised Ofqual body such as the NCFE Cache Level 3 Award in Childcare and Education, The Nursery Nurse Diploma and Child Care Level 3 which only provide a basic knowledge or foundation on early years. But also these courses DO NOT provide you with a license to practice.
Making it more confusing , Cache NCFE now also works with training centres who want to obtain certification from them, in order to recognise the standard and quality of their own unregulated and bespoke courses.
Currently, course providers are not required to state whether or not their course is full and relevant and that is where the problem lies. This is causing confusion with students, which many are fresh out of school and may not know to ask this crucial piece of information. And even the providers who clearly state that there course does not provide students a licence to practice, the complicated regulations in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) that relate to the ratio of qualified staff to children, as well as what a full and relevant qualification really means, is not clearly understood by those looking to move into the industry.
It is essential that the correct qualifications are held by all individuals who are going into early years roles, this means that they must hold a licence to practice – which is something received upon completing the correct qualification/s.
If you are unsure of the information which you have been provided remember to ask beforehand so you don’t end up with the wrong qualification/s.
To check whether a qualification is full and relevant, use the Ofqual Register of Regulated Qualifications: