Teachers of early years children should be given the same status and pay as the rest of the profession, parents and campaigners for better nursery education said today.
A poll of just over 1,000 parents revealed 78 per cent would like to see nursery teachers given Qualified Teacher Status.
Now daynurseries.co.uk, which organised the poll, is urging the new Minister for the early years, Sam Gyimah, to reverse an earlier Government ruling that QTS should not apply to nursery teachers.
“The early years are amongst the most important in a child’s development so let’s see the profession elevated to reflect that,” said Davina Ludlow, director of daynurseries.co.uk.
Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Pre-School Learning alliance, added: “We would urge the new Childcare Minister to look into this issue as a matter of priority. The Government claims that early years teacher status is equal to QTS but this is simply not the case.
“Early years work is complex, challenging and requires a high level of expertise and this should be reflected in the professional status of those working in the sector.”
Former Childcare Minister Elizabeth Truss introduced training for early years teaching in September 2013 in order that standards would more closely match those of classroom teachers. In a report, More great Childcare, she argued: “There is a need to transform the status of the profession.”
However, she added: “We do not consider a route to the award of QTS necessary to do this.”