The last 20 years have brought numerous workforce reforms to the early years sector, enacted in the name of professionalisation, including the recent introduction of a new postgraduate qualification, the Early Years Teacher Status. This article features data from interviews with 22 participants who had just completed this award and situates their views in the relevant policy context and alongside a discussion of what it means to professionalise the early years sector and create a graduate led workforce. The data support findings from similar studies of Early Years Professionals, namely that the interviewees are passionate about working with young children. They view the sector as in need of change, and themselves as potential leaders and agents of change. The participants endorse the view that up-skilling the workforce is essential to the professionalisation of the sector and improving the quality of early years education.
- Early years
- teacher training