What is Early Years Professional Status?
Early Years Professional Status (EYPS) is a degree level status which is equivalent to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) level 6. It is a status which recognises the expertise of the practitioner within the Early Years sector as a professional leader.
What is an Early Years Professional?
An Early Years Professional (EYP) is a practitioner who is focussed on raising the quality within early years provisions, and thus outcomes for all children in their care. A graduate will provide innovation and can support a settings ability to manage change. Higher education can help to develop critical thinking and reflective skills which are essential for Early Years Practitioners. Early Years Professional Status is awarded to Early Years Practitioners who have met the 39 standards which embody:
"the skills, creativity, commitment, energy and enthusiasm required for maintaining high quality personal practice within Early Years and the intellectual and leadership skills required of effective EYPs."
(Guidance to the Standards of the Award of Early Years Professional Status, 2008, p6)
The practitioner must hold GCSE Maths and English, minimum grade C.
To view a job description and person specification for an Early Years Professional click here.
The role of the Early Years Professional
The Early Years Professional, in accordance with the 39 standards of the Early Years Professional Status, will lead practice across the Early Years Foundation Stage. Within Essex EYPs are viewed as change agents who are role models and implement best practice within their early years settings, by working with the children. They also support and mentor other practitioners, modelling skills and behaviours which are consistent with safeguarding and promoting the welfare of all the children within their care. Through the EYPs guidance children will benefit from the increased knowledge and professional expertise which will be cascaded throughout the setting to practitioners, parents and other professionals from within and beyond the setting.
Why do we need Early Years Professionals?
EYPS is a status which acknowledges that young children deserve a graduate led workforce. It is part of a national drive to improve and professionalise the Early Years workforce. It is hoped that the Government target to employ an EYP in every full day care setting will be achieved by 2015 and in every children’s centre by 2010.