Angela

Guide to Child Care Courses & Qualifications

by Angela | Published on April 10, 2014

Well I guess your reading this because you’ve decided that you would love to work with children as a career choice, well congratulations that really is great news, working with children is so rewarding watching them thrive and grow in their early years. You really will be helping them to get the best start in life.

Guide to Child Care Courses & Qualifications

You will need to have a positive approach and be someone who loves a bit fun with a warm personality with lots of creative ideas and are able to work as part of a team. You don’t really need formal qualifications to begin your training although good standard of GCSEs would be beneficial.

There are many routes into child care either through your local college or training centre, where there are part time and full time courses available depending on the time you have available to put into your studies and of course there is also the option of studying from home with a distance learning course which is perfect for anyone who wants to learn whilst carrying out their other commitments.

We will discuss distance learning a little later. Just think, once you’ve completed your studies and have gained the necessary qualifications you could have your very own nursery one day.

A little info on who CACHE are

cache logoBefore we begin on qualifications let’s discuss Cache if you didn’t already know Cache stands for the Council for Awards in Children’s Care and Education. Cache is an official awarding body in the UK, they specialise in Care and Education, Early years and Play and work, and once you gain a Cache qualification you can take it all over the world.

These qualifications are greatly respected no matter where you are in the world. Cache childcare qualifications and courses start at entry level right through to more advanced and they are widely available at your local schools, training centres and colleges located throughout the UK.

What a CACHE qualification does is it proves to potential employers or parents that you are competent at your work and are more than capable at looking after children, this is especially important if you’re thinking of running your own child care nursery.

Of course, the course you will be required to complete will depend on what career in childcare your thinking of entering. For example if you want to become a nursery assistant in a prep school then you don’t necessarily need any formal qualifications, as you will be supervised by someone who already has a CACHE Level 3 certificate. It is however recommended that you do have a CACHE Level 2 in child care for this role, and if you’re thinking of setting up your own childcare nursery then you would most definitely need a CACHE Level 3 Certificate in children’s care, learning and development.

Ok so let’s get on and discuss these qualifications that you’re going to need in a little more detail.

CACHE Qualifications Explained and where they will take you

Here we will discuss what qualifications you will need ranging from the very basic stage through to more advanced stages, and will explain what is involved in each stage and where you can go after each one is completed. Guiding you from a total novice, all the way to a professional in their field.

First of all we will start at the very beginning and progress further, so read on to learn more about each stage and the qualifications you will gain after each one.

Cache Entry Level Certificate in preparation for childcare

This NQF qualification covers all the basic knowledge that will be required in order to be a good parent and will tell you how to care for your child by discussing how to carry out learning in the home as well as playing with the child and interacting with them, this qualification also discusses pregnancy. This qualification is suitable for anyone who is thinking about becoming a parent, or those who want to know more about working with children. You don’t have to be in a current job to complete this course as it’s only a knowledge qualification and it can usually be completed in a year. You will be assessed by your tutor and will complete three tasks these may include designing leaflets or charts. You need to be at least 14 years old to carry out this course.

This course doesn’t get you enough qualifications to enter the workplace but it supports you in your quest to getting further into your studies by going onto the next stage whether that be training or getting closer to working with children.

Once you complete this course you can then progress onto:

  • Level 1 Award, Certificate and Diploma in Caring for Children (QCF)
  • Level 1 Award in an Introduction to Early Years Settings (QCF)

CACHE Foundation Award in caring for children

This qualification covers the basic knowledge that’s required when caring for children and is perfect for those who are parents or anyone wanting to know more about working with children. The course is usually completed in a year and you need to be at least 14 years old to enrol on this course. You will be assessed by your tutor and also by CACHE with a multiple choice question paper and also a task that has to be carried out. It may be beneficial to you if you spend some time on a practical work placement to take this qualification.

This qualification doesn’t get you into the workplace but will be of great benefit in supporting you onto the next stage of your studies.

Once you have successfully completed this qualification you can then progress to:

  • Level 2 Certificate for the Children and Young People’s Workplace (QCF)
  • Level 2 Diploma for Children’s Care, Learning and Development
  • Level 2 Certificate Introducing Caring for Children and Young People (QCF)
  • Level 2 Award, Certificate and Diploma in Child Care and Education (NQF)

CACHE Level 2 Award, Certificate and Diploma in Childcare and education

This qualification will help to develop your skills and knowledge that will be required of you when you are working under supervision with children and their parents/families in different settings for example nurseries, pre-schools and children’s centres. This course is perfect for anyone wanting to work with either children or young people.

To enrol on this course you need to be at least 14 years old for the Award and Certificate sections and at least 16 years old for the Diploma. You will be assessed by your tutor and also CACHE. You will have to complete written assignments for the Award section and a portfolio, written assignment and a multiple choice question paper for the Certificate.

For the Diploma you will complete your portfolio, written assignments and a multiple choice question paper along with an assessment of your performance in the workplace and a written assignment.

You don’t have to be working to take the course but you will be required to spend some time at various practical placements in order to complete your Diploma.

The Award and Certificate sections can usually be completed within a year or less and the Diploma generally is also a year.

The Award and Certificate don’t get you into the workplace but once you have successfully completed your Diploma you can then work as:

  • An early Years assistant in a school or children’s centre
  • A preschool assistant
  • Special educational needs assistant
  • Nursery foundation stage assistant

Once you complete this course you can then progress to:

  • Level 3 Diploma for the Children and Young People’s Workplace (QCF)
  • Level 3 Extended Diploma for the Children and Young People’s Workforce (QCF)
  • Level 3 Award, Certificate and Diploma in Childcare and Education (NQF)

CACHE Level 2 Certificate in Pre School Practice

This qualification develops your knowledge and skills that are needed to enhance and support the development of children up to 5 years of age. This course covers legislation governing pre-schools, regulation and how you can support children’s emotional and social development and how they can build positive relationships with their parents/families.

This course is suitable for anyone who wants to work as an assistant in a playgroup, nursery or preschool.

To enrol on this course you will need to be at least 16 years of age and will be assessed by your tutor and also CACHE by completing written assignments. You don’t need to be working to take this course but you will have to spend 150 hours working under supervision in a practical placement.

The course usually takes a year to complete.

Once you have successfully completed this course you can then work as:

  • A preschool assistant
  • An Early Years assistant in a children’s centre

From this course you can then progress to:

  • Level 3 Diploma in Pre School Practice (NQF)
  • Level 3 Diploma for the Children and Young People’s Workforce (QCF)
  • Level 3 Diploma for Children’s Care, Learning and Development

CACHE Level 3 Award in Early Years and Child Care for Play workers

This course is for those who already have a Level 3 qualification in play work and the National Occupational Standards for Children’s Care Learning and Development. It fills the gap if you like between the knowledge and skills of those qualifications. It is suitable for qualified play workers who want to work in early year’s childcare.

You need to be at least 16 years old to enrol and must already hold a Level 3 Play work qualification. You will be assessed by your tutor and also CACHE by completing written assignments.

You don’t need to be working but you will need access to an early years setting so that you can carry out observations that will be required in your assessments.

The course can usually be completed in 6 months or even less.

Once you successfully complete this course you can work as:

  • An Early Years nursery practitioner
  • A practitioner in extended child care
  • A preschool practitioner
  • A crèche supervisor

From this course you can progress to:

  • Level 3 Extended Diploma for the Children and Young People’s Workforce
  • Level 3 Diploma for the Children and Young People’s Workforce
  • Level 3 Award, Certificate and Diploma in Child Care and Education
  • Level 4 NVQ in Children’s Care, Learning and Development
  • Level 5 Diploma in Leadership for Health and Social Care and Children and Young People’s Services

CACHE Level 3 Award, Certificate and Diploma in Childcare and Education

These qualifications will prepare you to work either in a supervisory capacity or work unsupervised, with children and their families, in many different locations. These may include, pre-schools, children’s centres, nurseries and even home based child care. This course is perfect for anyone wanting to work with children and young people. You need to be at least 16 years old to enrol on this course.

You will be assessed by your tutor and CACHE. You will be required to complete written assignments for the award section and a short answer test and written assignment for the Certificate and for the Diploma you will have a written assignment, a short answer test plus additional written assignments, assessments of your work performance in the workplace and you will also have to complete a research task.

You don’t need to be working to take these qualifications but you will be required to spend a certain amount of time in different practical placements in order to complete your Diploma.

You will be able to complete your Diploma in 2 years and the Award and Certificate can usually be completed in less than 1 year.

The Award and Certificate don’t allow you to work with children or young people but once you have your Diploma you can work as:

  • An Early years/foundation stage practitioner
  • A special educational needs support worker
  • A nanny/home based child carer
  • A children’s centre practitioner

Once you complete this course you can then progress to:

  • Level 5 Diploma in leadership for health and social care and Children and young people’s services
  • A degree

CACHE Level 3 Diploma in home based childcare

This qualification will develop the skills and knowledge that’s required when you’re supporting the development and care of children and young people in a home based environment and working on your own. This qualification also covers the regulations and legislation governing home based childcare.

This course is suitable for all home based carers for example nannies and child minders.

You need to be at least 16 years old to enrol. You will be assessed by your tutor and CACHE. You will be required to complete a multiple choice question paper and also written assignments.

You don’t have to be working to take this qualification. You can usually complete this course in a year. Unit 1 can be completed in 12 hours as a pre-registration qualification for home based child carers/child minders.

Once you successfully complete this course you can become:

  • A childminder/home based child carer
  • A nanny

From this course you can progress to:

  • Level 3 Extended Diploma for the children and young people’s workforce
  • Level 5 Diploma in leadership for health and social care and children and young people’s services
  • A degree in a related discipline

CACHE Level 3 Diploma in preschool practice

This qualification will develop the skills and knowledge required to support children’s social, physical, emotional, intellectual and language development up to the age of 5 years of age. The qualification covers how to create healthy, stimulating and safe preschool environments and how to build positive relationships with their parents.

This qualification is perfect for anyone who wants to work as a supervisor either in a preschool, nursery or a playgroup.

You need to be at least 16 years old to enrol. You will be assessed by your tutor and CACHE by completing written assignments.

You don’t need to be working to take this qualification but you will be required to spend 360 hours in a practical placement whilst working under supervision.

This qualification can usually be completed in a year.

Once you complete this course you can become a:

  • Preschool supervisor
  • A playgroup supervisor
  • A nursery practitioner

From this course you can progress to:

  • Level 3 Extended Diploma for the children and young people’s workforce
  • Level 5 Diploma in leadership for health and social care and children and young people’s services
  • A degree in a related discipline

CACHE Level 4 Certificate in managing quality standards in Children’s services

This qualification will develop the skills and knowledge required to develop quality assurance practices for example improving, establishing and maintaining quality standards in children’s services, analysing training needs and developing learning programmes and managing the preparation required for statutory inspections.

This qualification is perfect for those who would like to become a qualified practitioner who will be involved with preparing their environment for accredited quality assurance inspections or schemes.

You will need to be at least 18 years old to enrol and be an experienced or qualified practitioner.

You will be assessed by your tutor and also by CACHE and this qualification can usually be completed in 1 year.

Once you complete this course you can become:

  • A quality assured manager in children’s centres, preschools and nurseries

From this course you can progress to:

  • Level 5 Diploma in Leadership for Health and Social Care and Children and Young People’s Services

CACHE Level 2 Award and Certificate in Support Work in Schools

This qualification covers the skills and knowledge that will be required to make your contribution to the school more effective and valuable.

This qualification is for anyone working in a supervised support role with young people and children, for example, a receptionist, a school administrator, a library assistant, caretaker, learning support assistant or a lunch time assistant.

You need to be at least 16 years old to enrol and you will be assessed by direct observation in your workplace combined with a portfolio for example, email or other records, discussions and witness testimonials.

You will need to be employed or working as a volunteer in a school environment to take this qualification.

The qualification is usually completed in a year and that includes both the Award and Certificate.

  • What this qualification does is it supports you in your current job position and with the range of units available you can then enter other support roles in the school.

From this qualification you can progress to:

  • Level 2 or 3 QCF Supporting Teaching and Learning qualifications

CACHE Level 2 Certificate in Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools

This qualification will develop the skills and knowledge that’s required to provide better and effective support to teachers and the pupils as part of learning programmes and covers the development of young people and children and also working more effectively with your colleagues.

This qualification is perfect for anyone who wants to work in support roles for example, classroom assistants and also learning support assistants.

You need to be at least 16 years old to enrol and it is recommended that you have a GCSE or equivalent at grade D or above.

You will be assessed by your tutor with written assignments.

You will need to be employed or working as a volunteer in a school environment in order to take this qualification.

You can usually complete this course in a year.

From this qualification you can become:

  • A teaching assistant
  • A special educational needs assistant
  • A learning support assistant

From this qualification you can progress to:

  • Level 3 Award and Certificate in Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools

CACHE Level 3 Award, Certificate and Diploma in Support Work in Schools

This qualification develops the skills and knowledge that is required in order to make a more effective and valuable contribution to schools. It also includes a Parent Support pathway (Certificate and Diploma only) and covers skills more specialised for directly supporting parents on a one to one basis.

This qualification is perfect for anyone working in an unsupervised support role with young people and children for example, receptionist, library assistant, schools administrator, IT support worker, learning support assistant, lunch time assistant or caretaker.

You need to be at least 18 years old to enrol and you will be assessed by direst observation in your workplace combined with a portfolio of your work as additional evidence for example, written records, witness testimonials and professional discussions.

You will need to be working to take this qualification, you need to be employed or working as a volunteer in a school environment.

This qualification can usually be completed in a year and that includes the Award, Certificate and the Diploma.

  • This qualification supports you in your job that you are currently in and the Parent Support pathway will enable you to support parents on a one to one basis.

From this qualification you can progress to:

  • Level 3 Award and Certificate in Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools

 

CACHE Level 3 Certificate in Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools

This qualification covers the skills and knowledge that will be required when supporting learning and teaching in schools, it also covers how you can work better with others in order to achieve shared opinions when supporting and learning of groups or individuals.

This qualification is ideal for anyone working with pupils either i groups or as individuals or working under supervision of a group leader. It is also perfect for people wanting to work in this environment.

You will need to be at least 16 years old to enrol and it is recommended that you have a GCSE or equivalent at a grade C or above.

You will be assessed by your tutor by completing written assignments.

To take this qualification you need to be employed or working as a volunteer in a school environment and can usually be completed in 1 year.

From this qualification you can become:

  • A teaching assistant
  • A special educational needs assistant
  • A learning support assistant

From this qualification you can progress to:

  • Level 3 Certificate in Cover Supervision of Pupils in Schools
  • A degree