Call to align nursery and primary school teacher status

The BBC is reporting calls from the Pre-School Learning Alliance that nursery school teachers should be given the same status and pay as those in primary school…

It said early-years teachers were being “locked out” of teaching in primary schools, even in reception classes.

Nursery teachers were very disheartened at the government’s failure to bring the two sets of teachers’ status in line, said the charity.

But the government said the move was “not necessary”.

Former Childcare Minister Elizabeth Truss introduced the training of early-years teachers in January 2013 in an attempt to boost their status.

But the measures did not mean early-years teachers had qualified-teacher status (QTS), like those in primary and secondary schools, said Day Nurseries, an online guide to nurseries.

The Pre-School Learning Alliance, which represents 14,000 early-years providers in the private and voluntary sector, says that as nurseries are independent, they do not have the same backing as state-funded schools, so cannot pay the same salaries to their staff.

Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Alliance, said: “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 qualified-teacher status, but this is simply not the case.”

“As it stands, they are teachers in name only.”

Mr Leitch said ensuring early-years teachers were granted qualified teacher status would be an important step in “ensuring parity between early years and the rest of the education sector”.

Pre-school staff earn on average £17,000 a year, and primary school staff on average £33,000, according to the charity.

The organisation called for a boost to funding for independent nurseries, so they could increase staff wages.

A Department for Education (DfE) spokesman said the two types of teaching were “different jobs”, so aiming to make progression from one into the other easier was not relevant…

More at: Call to align nursery and primary school teacher status


Do you agree with the suggestions from the Pre-School Learning Alliance that early-years teachers should have the same status as those in primary school or do you see them as different jobs with, potentially, different status and pay? Please let us know in the comments, via Twitter and by taking part in our poll…

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  1. professoredith

    getcarter66 SchoolsImprove In Scotland Primary teachers can teach any class from nursery upwards. No distinction. Value ALL our teachers.

  2. cathodrury

    g56g SchoolsImprove We are trained teachers, specialists in EYFS. why am I not surprised you were president of NUT! It explains a lot!

  3. cathodrury

    g56g SchoolsImprove Primary QTS can teach EYFS without any training in it. Staff logistics and management more important than the child.

  4. AllThingsMaths

    SchoolsImprove The biggest impact we have on our children is in the earliest years. Get it right here and kids have a far better pathway

  5. g56g

    cathodrury SchoolsImprove as trained teachers of course you should be paid as a teacher. Not all are. I’ll ignore the unnecessary barb!

  6. g56g

    cathodrury SchoolsImprove Preaching to the converted I’m afraid. Trained teachers should be paid as teachers, school Nursery Teachers are.

  7. g56g

    cathodrury SchoolsImprove trained nursery nurses, specialists in EYFS are not paid as teachers because they are not teachers.

  8. cathodrury

    g56g cathodrury SchoolsImprove that was the point of the article, as an EYTS the government say we are equivalent to QTS but we aren’t.

  9. cathodrury

    g56g SchoolsImprove and so are EYTS’s according to the Government. However we do not have equal pay or reception teaching opportunities.

  10. cathodrury

    g56g SchoolsImprove EYTS is not a nursery nurse. It’s a graduate who has passed teaching entry requirements +further training + assessment

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