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…
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…[yop_poll id=”251″]