Early Years Recruitment and the GCSE Rule

GCSE Reforms

GCSEs in England are being reformed with a new grade scale from 9 to 1, with 9 being the highest grade. From August 2017, English Literature, English Language and Maths will be the first subjects to be graded in this way. This will result in students receiving a mixture of letter and number grades from summer 2017.

With these changes being implemented, the proportion of students expected to get a ‘good pass’ in English and Maths, could worsen the early year’s recruitment crisis experienced in the Early Years sector.

With the introduction of GCSE Grade C English and Maths for all level 3 practitioners in childcare settings from September 2014, there has been a ‘remarkable drop’ in the number of young people entering the sector.

The DfE is now consulting on the possibility of allowing functional skills equivalents to count in place of GCSEs for an ‘interim period’ until more school leavers get the required grades.

However, GCSE’s in maths and English show figures remaining stagnant over the coming years. With one in four pupils currently gaining a C grade, expected to get a grade 5 next year. This will slip below the ‘gold’ standard government are currently striving for.

Statistics published by the DfE last week reveal 31% of under-fives are already behind in communication, maths and social skills when starting primary school. It is feared this figure could worsen without more skilled Early Years Educators being recruited to this important sector.

With the number of nurseries on the Early Years, Register (EYR) rated Good or Outstanding increasing from 84 per cent to 95 per cent since August 2015, according to Ofsted’s latest early years statistics.

Whilst the quality of the sector is at an all-time high, the quantity of practitioners is not. This needs to be addressed with Early Years Recruitment and where Aspire Training Team can help you make the grade!


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