The Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) sets out the requirements for staff to child ratios in settings delivering the EYFS and the qualification levels that practitioners must hold.

The National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) defines the full and relevant qualifications that practitioners must hold to be included in the specified ratios at levels 2 and 3 of the EYFS.

The Early Years Qualifications List provides guidance and a search tool to help those delivering the EYFS to identify qualifications that are considered to be full and relevant at levels 2 and 3.

Qualifications started before September 2014

Practitioners who completed or registered for a qualification before 1 September 2014 must hold a qualification that meets the full and relevant criteria to be counted in the specified ratios at levels 2 and 3.

Qualifications started after September 2014

Practitioners who registered for a qualification from 1 September 2014 must hold a qualification that meets the early years educator criteria to be considered full and relevant and to be counted in the level 3 ratios.

To count in the ratios at level 3, staff holding an early years educator qualification must also have achieved GCSEs in English and maths at grade C or above.

A qualification that has ‘early years educator’ in its title or offers an ‘early years educator’ pathway is considered full and relevant.


Author: Jen Wilson

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