Celebrating Our Apprentices
We have seen many of our apprentices flourish into professional, talented, caring and skilled nursery nurses over the years. Some have gone onto higher education, teaching and even an accomplished author! However, we have been blessed that so many have wished to continue to stay on at St. Michael's and bring their enthusiasm and talents to the nursery everyday!
Nursery Manager Sarah explains "we are very proud of our apprentices who every day work alongside our team, learning new skills, facing new challenges and studying for each module towards their Early Years Educator qualifications. We enjoy seeing our apprentices grow in confidence and bravely taking on new roles within the setting (imagine reading a story to 20 kindergarteners!), building strong relationships with children and colleagues and becoming enthusiastic individual practitioners."
Chloe and Emma are well on their way towards gaining their Level 2 and already keen to build on their training and gain the next level.
Chloe explains that she loves the "hands on experience" and she feels that there is always someone there to mentor and support her. Only this morning, Chloe was so pleased that she bottle fed a baby and is really proud of the variety of skills that she is acquiring, working within a larger nursery.
We first met Emma back in 2019 when she was on a Work Experience programme. Two years later, Emma is a valued member of the team working with all our age groups and enjoying the "hands on experience" enabling "more understanding of working with children." Emma, who has previously worked with Year 3 & 4 within a school developing a sports programme during lunch time play, says she wants to "make a difference" for the children that she works with.
Leah and Zoe are so close to their Level 3 award and we look forward to celebrating with them!
Zoe, who describes herself as "an older student," explains how the apprenticeship route really appeals to her, allowing her to work full time alongside her studies for Level III in Childcare. She feels that St. Michael's supports her "very well" and she is looking forward to planning some trips out with the children in the near future.
When asked what are the benefits of an apprenticeship, Leah talks about how she enjoys working & interacting with the children everyday and she is able to learn more by working alongside other childcare professionals; "particularly in the woods in outdoor learning. It's okay to take risks and can be child led. The inhouse training was helpful." Leah is also very happy with her level of support by St. Michael's, in particular with getting a quick response when asking questions. Leah describes everyone here as friendly and it's lovely because "everyone asks me how I'm doing".
We are also supporting another member of staff who is training towards her Level III in childcare in a similar way to an apprenticeship. Megan is really enjoying her course and mainly works in the Dragonfly room. Megan talks about how the units covered are vital to underpin the knowledge she needs in this profession, they include "Safeguarding, Equality, Diversity and I've just finished one about reflecting on my practice which has been helpful."
Well done to all our apprentices - we are so proud of you all!