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Teaching Assistant Qualifications In A Pre-school Setting


anjib24
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Hello, I'm a new member and this is my very first post so I hope you will all be very gentle with me!

 

I am Supervisor in a committee-run pre-school setting. We offer flexible full day care for up to 17 2 - 5 year olds from 9.15am to 3pm Monday to Friday. We have just lost two Level 3 qualified staff members and are looking to recruit a new Deputy Supervisor. The best candidate is currently working in a maintained school nursery and has a Level 3 Teaching Assistant qualification. I checked this out with the CWDC and they informed me that as this qualification is not listed on the Early Years and Playwork Database it would not be considered suitable. They suggested she should complete the Level 3 Certificate in Early Years Foundation Stage Practice. I spoke to our Early Years Team and they said that the CWDC are really pushing this qualification but as the candidate hasn't any early years qualification she should do a full Level 3 NVQ. Spoke to Ofsted for a clear directive and they have pointed me to the Qualifications Section of the Department for Children, Schools and Families. I've left a message and am awaiting a reply.

 

Help! Has anyone else had any experience of employing someone with a teaching assistant qualification in an early years setting? The Deputy will be required to cover for me on my day off and in the event of illness. The rest of the time we will be working together. Would 'working towards' a Level 3 qualification be considered acceptable to Ofsted if she hasn't any other early years qualifications?

 

All replies gratefully received as I'm feeling very frustrated :o

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This is something I would like clarifying. I heard that as long as you are working towards the level 3 it can be counted as a level 3, but then a nursery I worked at didn't do that.

 

My understanding is that 'working towards' a level 3 can be counted as long as the person is deemed suitable - get her to fill in her DC2 (?) form and submit to Ofsted and then they might come and do a suitability interview. This is what we have done with our deputy - she only has a level 2, but is due to do her OU Certificate in Early Years in October, plus she has years of suitable experience - so Ofsted said she was ok to be counted as level 3!

 

Gosh, I hope that made sense, it's a bit waffly sorry!!!

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hiya

I personally would not do the nvq 3 as this is meant to be work based and she hasnt had the experience in early years. so i would go with the other as that is the core of early years at mo. What does she think?

Good luck

Andrea

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Hi I had my suitable persons interview and are adversting for staff at the moment. I am sure that Mrs 'O' said that deputy should have level 3 when taking up the postion. So I guess that is in line with the changes in September 08, although it does not state this in the new EYFS book but does say that there is a named deputy and the manager/supervisor should be level 3. Which then would make sense in having a deputy at Level 3 as the deputy could be left in charge on occassions.

 

Sorry I may have been wafflly at the end and hope it make sense.

 

Beth

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What other staff will be there & what qualifcations do they have?

 

We've got the manager (Level 3), Deputy (me) (Level 3 + going to be doing Level 5 of the foundation degree from Sept), 3 experienced assistants with level 2 & 1 new, inexperienced assistant with level 3. 2 of the assitants have started level 3 so we'll have qualifed & experienced staff. As it is, I'll be out 1 day a week for the next year doing my course & on 1 day the manager will be out doing training. We'll have staff in who have Level 3 & staff who are expereinced; they're just not the same person!

 

Will watch this with interest, as we've asked one of our mums to come in that day, as she has her teaching assistant qualification she took while volunteering in our local school.

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I'd find out if the teaching assistant qualification (at level 3) is ok to get onto the foundation degree. Just thinking that if it is (maybe she also has other 'life' experience that gives her early years Knowledge & skills) it will help your setting to have the degree level qualified person required for 2015 (or 2010 in full day care). Maybe Ofsted would accept this too (although I'm not familiar with the new EYFS requirements)

 

Many moons ago I went from a certificate in preschool (below level 2) straight into the ADCE (advanced Diploma) due to my prior experiences.

 

Just a thought. :o

 

Peggy

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  • 2 weeks later...

Interesting topic! So if the Supervisor is off (she is level 3) does there have to be a level 3 person to stand in for her? Had this conversation today and I thought it was a requirement to always have at least 1 person present at level 3 or above and you couldn't have 2 staff present, both working towards level 3, as this would not count? Sorry - not worded that too good, am supposed to be doing something else right now...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi

I was following this thread with interest. I have found the whole issue of whether 'working towards a qualification' is significant when it comes to the whole qualifications/ratio issue.

 

I have long since given up phoning OFSTED as at inspection time saying 'oh well i phoned OFSTED and they said it was OK' simply doesn't wash - I want things in writing!

 

I have been awaiting a reply from OFSTED who initially couldn't answer my query but today I have had a reply and it might not be what you all want to hear :o but here it is and it comes from 'The children's directorate EY Frameworks Manager' :

 

 

"Thank you for your query. The EYFS states clearly that all managers or supervisors must hold a full and relevant level 3 qualification. This includes anybody who acts in this position as at the time they are the supervisor/manager. It also applies to any member of staff working as a room leader/supervisor such as in a big day nursery.

 

There is no where in the EYFS statutory framework that says working towards is accepted as being qualified.

 

It also states that half the other staff must hold a full and relevant level 2, again it does not say working towards is acceptable as qualified.

 

This is a welfare specific legal requirement and it is expected that all settings will meet all the requirements.

 

Hope you find this helpful"

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Hi,

i was deputy in a private day nursery but had level 3 early years qualification. when i did my ratios for children and staff we were not allowed to class staff who were working towards a qualification! With the new framework that starts in september i would be surprised if they were not level 3 for this to be allowed as i curremtly work in a school and we use to have a level 2 to help two level 3 cover the teachers ppa time but as from september this is going to have to be 3 level 3's.

Hope you find out what is correct good luck

Christine 0258 x

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I have gained employment in a Pre-School as a manager with a level 3 Teaching Assistant qualification. I searched on the CWDC website and sent them an email, and at the time (last November) this qualification was recognised as being ok for early years. This is the e-mail reply I had from CWDC :

 

" I have checked on our database and the qualification is a recognised level 3 qualification according to the current national standards. Suitable job roles would be early years supervisors, early years managers and qualified nursery assistants in nursery schools."

 

(have just checked CWDC wesite and level 3 Teaching Assistant is still there as OK for Early Years Manager)

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