An exciting and ambitious Childcare, Play and Early Years Workforce Plan, has been warmly welcomed by Social Care Wales.
The 10-year plan, which has just been published, is aimed at the 23,300 people who work in childcare or play with children up to the age of 12. It has been announced by the Minister for Social Care and Children, Huw Irranca-Davies.
The workforce includes childcare practitioners and managers, childminders, leaders and assistants of playgroups and out-of-school clubs, and those working in Flying Start.
The plan, which is aligned to the Welsh Government’s national strategy Prosperity for All, covers the next decade, but focuses particularly on what will be done over the next three years.
We will have a major role to play in supporting Welsh Government and other partners in putting the plan into action. This will include:
- Working with the Welsh Government and Qualifications Wales to develop new qualifications for childcare, learning, development and play
- Supporting the attraction, recruitment and retention of high-quality new entrants to the childcare profession
- Putting in place a clear career pathway
- Managing national workforce planning and data forecasting
- Providing support to employers and practitioners
- Representing the sector on the new implementation group as part of our sector skills council role.
Sue Evans, our Chief Executive, said: “Early years and childcare practitioners have a vital role to play in providing children with a safe and stimulating environment. They provide learning, development and play opportunities for children of all backgrounds. This gives children the best start in life and maximises their prospects for bright and happy futures.
“That’s why we warmly welcome this exciting and ambitious plan and the aspirations it has for a high-quality workforce in early years, childcare and play. We are excited by the prospect of working in partnership with Welsh Government and many others to make early years and childcare a highly-regarded profession and a career of choice.
“We are already involved in a number of initiatives to develop a high-quality workforce such as supporting induction into the sector and providing careers advice for those interested in working in childcare. We will also continue to work with Qualifications Wales, the awarding bodies’ consortium and the sector to develop new qualifications to underpin quality in early years and childcare,” added Sue.