Comment on the Education Secretary’s conference early years pledge

Commenting on the Education Secretary’s commitment at the Conservative Party Conference to ‘invest’ in early years staff, Community Union’s Assistant General Secretary (Voice education and early years section) Deborah Lawson said:

“We welcome the Education Secretary’s commitment to the early years.

“Investment in early years staff is long overdue and we know the sector is currently in a staffing crisis.

“Investing more into early years training will hopefully encourage more to take up the profession and help to retain existing staff. However, while pay remains so low, and staff can earn more in low skilled work elsewhere, investment in training alone will not be enough to tackle the recruitment and retention crisis.

“Under successive governments, the early years sector has been the ‘Cinderella service’ – overlooked, or added as a footnote to announcements about schools; taken for granted, and starved of resources. That must change, and we hope today’s news is the start of that change.”

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