Nursery ratios raised ‘to improve standards

nurseryOne year ago yesterday and the government was positioning itself for educational reforms.  This one was taking the continental model, essentially of employing graduates in nursery schools.  Questionable.  I haven’t heard anything more about it.  I suspect it was just another of those political headline-grabbing statements.


IT’s Childs Play

It’s child’s play on the continent,
where it seems there’s overall assent:
a child’s formative years of ABC
need a PhD in psychiatry.
Really?  No.  I jest!  That’s not quite what I meant.

For certain there’s educational intent
for academic grades to complement
the caring skills there need to be –
it’s child’s play.

They’ve surely set a precedent,
a pointer, claim our government
that academically qualified staff would be
good for the child, reducing costs for you and me –
more kids, less staff to implement –
it’s child’s play.


29th January 2013 – headline from the BBC

Notes:  “Nursery ratios raised ‘to improve standards‘”.  Nurseries and childminders in England are to be allowed to look after more children, in a package ministers say will improve quality and cut costs.  The ratio of children to carers can be raised, but only if carers’ qualifications meet new standards.  Children’s Minister Liz Truss said the proposals would make more childcare places available and reduce costs for parents in the “long term”.  But she came under fire for citing other European countries which allow nursery workers to look after more children than in Britain.  Critics warn the change in ratios could actually compromise quality of care.  They also predict the changes – which are due to come into force in the autumn – will be unpopular with parents and are unlikely to reduce the overall costs of childcare.  Professor Helen Penn , Professor of Early Childhood at the University of East London, co-wrote a report for the government with Professor Eva Lloyd last year which warned relaxing ratios would lead to a ‘deterioration’ in the quality of care.

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