Child Care and Education workers care for children from birth to eight years old, in day nurseries, nursery schools, primary schools and hospitals.
Some care for older children with disabilities or special educational needs. Duties can include feeding, bathing and dressing babies, and encouraging older children to learn skills such as dressing themselves.
Through activities like play, counting games, storytelling and outings, Child Care and Education workers help children to develop social, number and language skills and discover more about the world. The work also involves observing and assessing children and producing reports on their development.
Child Care and Education workers are employed by local authorities, voluntary and community groups, private companies and NHS trusts. Nursery practitioners who work with children unsupervised must have a Level 3 qualification in Child Care and Education.
Early years practitioners, who must have a Level 2 qualification, work with children under supervision. Students can progress to employment in a nursery, as a nanny or working in schools depending on the qualification achieved. Many go to university to study teaching or nursing.