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Teaching Qualifications For Early Childhood

Teaching Qualifications For Early Childhood Education Licensing

Cabinet has approved plans for higher qualification requirements for people responsible for the education and care of children in early childhood education services, Education Minister Trevor Mallard told Parliament today.

The move follows widespread consultation with the early childhood sector, including consideration of the best way to recognise and build on existing qualifications and experience.

The changes will require persons responsible in centre-based services as well as co-ordinators in home-based care networks to hold at least a Diploma of Teaching for Early Childhood Education.

The new qualification requirements for people currently holding the positions will come into affect from 1 January 2005. From 1 January 2002 those who are new to such positions will be required to hold at least a Diploma of Teaching (ECE).

“Research tells us that improving qualifications in early childhood education will help considerably in our efforts to provide quality learning outcomes for our young children,” Trevor Mallard said.

“This initiative will help us ensure that all children receive the educational start in life that they deserve.

“Persons responsible have to ensure the educational quality of programmes developed by the services’ staff. That is why we are so concerned that they have a comprehensive qualification.

“The Government is also putting in place support for early childhood services to meet the new qualification requirements. This includes grants to services to help them meet the cost of their staff’s qualifications upgrade, TeachNZ scholarships for Maori and Pacific early childhood teacher trainees, and Recognition of Prior Learning systems so that people needing to upgrade their qualifications will get fair recognition of their current skills and knowledge.”

Due to the nature of their programmes and philosophies, playcentres operating under group supervision and kohanga reo operating under Te Kohanga Reo National Trust, will not be included in the change.


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