At Pop Up, Party & Play we have had a 0% staff turnover rate from the moment we opened our doors. Although this is a great achievement for us as a company it cannot be said across the board within childcare. With high turnover rates being recorded in childcare settings, professionals are now beginning to highlight the damage this can have on a child’s development. Those specialising in child development warn of the effect increasing staff turnover rate can have, with early attachments being a crucial factor into the growth of a child’s confidence and development of learning goals. Staff regularly leaving results in a lack of continuity care and can leave children without the early attachments that are needed to thrive. Even as adults we don’t like change; I myself am a creature of habit and hate change, so one must wonder as a child what the impact must be.
Now the big question is why?
Early Years Careers state there are three main reasons for such a high turnover rate: Work conditions/ hours, pay and paperwork. Although some are unavoidable (paperwork is a must), we should all be asking why something is not being done for the people who allow us working parents to earn a living. With childcare costs steadily increasing why are childcare employees' pay not rising at the same rate? In a recent report by Education Policy Institute, childcare professionals earn 40% less than the average female worker.
This then bares the question is gender stereotyping to blame? 7.4% of workers within the childcare sector are male, although only 1.8% of these are nursery nurses and assistants. As a woman’s place is no longer ‘with the children’ and more women are choosing to enter the corporate world, one must wonder who is replacing them.
The millennial generation are said to be ‘snowflakes’, soft childlike adults that are emotionally vulnerable, expect immediate results and can’t manage the tasks that come with adult life. What if our early development was to blame after all? Will this mean we see a repeat in history, the dreaded Snowflakes 2.0?