Nearly 30 Aberdeen council workers have been retrained as nursery nurses ahead of tough new childcare targets.
This term, 29 members of staff will embark on their new careers as fully qualified early years’ practitioners (EYP) in the city after completing a one-year training course.
A further 30 employees from across the council who expressed interest in undertaking the course will also commence roles as trainee EYPs.
Council bosses now face tougher targets in delivering early years provision, with the Scottish Government proposing to increase the number of statutory hours from 600 to 1,140 hours by next year.
Chief education officer Eleanor Sheppard said: “We have had an amazing response from council staff to the re-training opportunity and our new early years practitioners will play a huge part in our aims to reduce the poverty-related attainment gap and improve long term outcomes for children and families”.
Fellow new EYP Marion Smith said: “I knew it would be hard at times as I have three kids myself who have gone through nursery but I was surprised at how busy it was.
“I was worried that I would struggle to build a bond with the kids as I was used to working with teens but the connection I’ve built with the kids and with the parents has been really worthwhile and means a lot to me.
“It’s been great studying while also being able to earn a wage and I would say if you fancy it, then do it. You’ll be making a difference to your own life as well as being part of making a difference in other people’s lives”.