Early Years Educators Must Complete Child Protection Training

The Department of Children and Youth Affairs has been urged to give early years educators the same opportunities as primary and second level teachers to complete child protection training.

Making the call, SIPTU Organiser, Theresa Butler, said: "The Department of Education and Skills has already given the green light to primary and secondary level educators to take paid time off in order to complete child protection training. Unfortunately, the Department of Children and Youth Affairs has not afforded the same opportunity to early years educators. The fact of the matter is, all organisations working with children and young people must provide child protection training for staff. While this is a positive development in the safeguarding of children, early years educators should not be expected to complete this training at their own expense. It's unacceptable and speaks volumes about the lack of adequate funding in the sector."

She added: "When we started this campaign we knew pay would be a big issue but we soon learnt that although pay is a high priority the winning of recognition is the main objective for early years educators. Child care has long since been neglected by the powers that be and this will continue unless professionals in the sector work together and stand united."

SIPTU Early Years National Committee member, June Hamill, added: "Matters like this cut to the core of what we are fighting for and why. Yet again, we are being treated as second class citizens. Our colleagues educating children in primary and secondary schools are given paid time off to complete this essential training while we must complete the training on our own time, at our own expense. It's not right and it's not fair.

"The only way to win respect for our profession is by getting organised and having one united voice. Early years educators, managers and providers can do this by joining SIPTU and getting active in the Big Start campaign. That is our best shot at achieving the professional recognition for the contribution we make."


Related Irish News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

26 September 2019
90% Of Educators Questioning Future In Childcare Sector
Some 90% of educators are questioning their future in the childcare sector, with low rates of pay the main issue. The issue has been revealed in the inaugural Early Years Professionals' survey.
21 March 2024
Those Eligible Urged To Get MMR Vaccine Ahead Of Easter Travel
All those eligible for the MMR vaccine have been urged to get vaccinated ahead of any Easter travel plans.
31 May 2017
Early Years Workers To Take Action Over Sector's Staffing Crisis
Early Years workers are set to embark on a social media campaign to highlight the staffing crisis facing the sector. SIPTU members worked as Early Years educators will embark on the #WhoValuesUs campaign during International Children's Day on Thursday, 01 June.
30 October 2017
New €3.5m Early Years Services Payments Announced
The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr. Katherine Zappone, has announced the details of the €3.5 million second Programme Support Payment of 2017 which is now being made available to all Early Years services who sign up to deliver measures to make childcare more affordable from September 2017.
06 April 2016
College-Led Consortium To Deliver Higher Education Programme
A consortium led by Mary Immaculate College in Limerick has been selected to deliver the new national Higher Education Programme for Inclusion Co-ordinators in Early Years Settings. The contract was awarded by Youth Minister Dr James Reilly alongside Education and Skills Minister Jan O'Sullivan.