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Advice for a 16 year old needed from Nannies

(17 Posts)
tensing Wed 10-Jun-09 08:16:33

A friends daughter is 16 and just leaving school. She wants to become a Nanny and asked me to help her.

For various personal reasons she is not really able to stay at home and attend college daily on a childcare course, so wants to get straight into the workplace.

She has lots of experience caring for babies and toddlers from within the family and also of family friends, so can get references.

She has looked into training with Smart training, but would obviously need a work placement or job.

Any advice on where she should start.

Thanks in advance.

frAKKINPannikin Wed 10-Jun-09 08:31:44

I would recommend she looks for nurseries able to tale on unqualified trainees and work for an NVQ 2 then 3. It will mean that she won't be able to become a nanny for a few years but she'll be able to get experience with children, a qualification and be paid. In any free time voluntary work such as helping with Brownies is good for a CV and paid babysitting will give her more experience, a bit more cash and references.

It might be possible to do find a mother's help job at 16 with no qualifications but it's unlikely and her long term career would be better off with nursery and a qualification. I think qualifications are going to be increasingly important for the childcare workforce and already nannies without a level 3 of higher are finding it harder to get jobs. Even tears down the line a qualification may just tip the balance on her favour for a job and it'll provide more career flexibility later on. Just my view obviously but hope it helps.

Blondeshavemorefun Wed 10-Jun-09 08:33:08

most agencys wont touch her beacuse of her age (16) and the fact she hasnt got a qual OR at least 2years experience

you cant get most jobs without exp, you cant get exp without a job - its a vicious circle

i would suggest either trying to get work in a nursery and doing a nvq along side

or advertising her self as a mothers help and get some exp that way

if she is really serious about being a nanny, then the best way is to try and get a qualifiaction - and this will prove to future employers that she is comitted

though sure others on here can come up with better advice

i think though obv flowery or nick can confirm but i am sure i remember reading somewehere that 17yrs can only work so many hours a week legally - think maybe 40 - so might not be able to work fulltime 5 days a week in nursery

or blonde could be typing complete crapsmile

leonifay Wed 10-Jun-09 09:28:10

blondes as far as i know, its provided they have 'officially' left school (the official date is usually around the middle of july) then they can work full time hours, but not after 10pm or before 6 i think

Blondeshavemorefun Wed 10-Jun-09 09:46:00

knew i wasnt going mad talking crap smile

bout 1/2way down the page

16yrs& 17yrs can only work 8hrs a day 40hrs a week

leonifay Wed 10-Jun-09 10:24:57

oh, you learn something new every day! grin

nannynick Wed 10-Jun-09 10:48:56

Childcare in England is slowly being seen as more of a professional occupation... we are now all encouraged to do NVQ Level 3 training (or higher), Nannies are now increasingly being Registered by Ofsted, and we will in the next few years I predict that we will all be carrying ID cards (linked to the new ISA scheme).

Guide to Ofsted Registration (Home Childcarers) - Minimum Age is 18.

When I did my 2 year NNEB course, I didn't live at home... I had a £50 per week bedsit. I worked in retail at weekends, and did as much evening babysitting as possible during the week to pay my bills. My course was 3 days at college, 2 days on placement.

What GCSE Grades does she have / predicted?

I feel she needs to do an NVQ Level 3 course, which is probably best done over 2 academic years - there are shorter courses but a 'compressed' course may be quite intensive paperwork wise.
She should chat with colleges to establish how they feel it is best to do these courses - such as is it better to be working in a childcare setting (such as a nursery) or is it better having a variety of placements. Back in my days, a variety of placements was required... not sure that is the case now.
The plus point with a variety of placements is that she could get a placement helping a family - so like a nanny, whereas working in a nursery is a different type of care (group care) which she may not be that keen on.

To go straight onto an NVQ Level 3 course, the college will expect her to have a good standard of education.

eastmidlandsnightnanny Wed 10-Jun-09 16:40:39

I would suggest she contacts her local youth workers or school nurses and finds out about a babysitting course locally and this will be from 6-12hrs over a few weeks in evenings and maybe free or cost a small fee - this will give her a very basic level qualification then she can start doing some babysitting work inc perhaps some after school babysitting work.

also she could perhaps look at mothers help work live in or au-pair work which wont pay a great deal but will give her experience then maybe she can go to college in the evenings once/twice a week.

frAKKINPannikin Wed 10-Jun-09 17:05:13

In fact she may be best going to get some career advice at connexions or similar depending on how much of a career she wants to make of it. We're all pretty much agreed she needs a qualification, preferably a level 3, the next question is where and how. I don't know how easy it is to do an NVQ as a nanny although there are a few who have done it but I suspect the main issue is finding a training provider and an employer willing to support it. For this reasn nurseries are a good option as they're used to supporting students and it's easier to get an entry level (unqualified) position. But mother's helping is an option.

Are there particular reasons she doesn't want to stay at college? Could this be an issue about academic confidence, in which case she may find the NVQ style of learning easier to get to grips with?

Once she's 17 I'd highly recommend au pairing abroad as another way to gain experience but most countries won't allow 16 year olds to au pair!

tensing Wed 10-Jun-09 17:54:02

She has spoken to Connexions and they have basically said her only option is to go to the local college. Definitely not an option, she could do an NVQ while working but I don't think she would cope well with full time college.

There are no Babysitting courses run around here, in fact the local authority organised youth services are fairly dire.

Millarkie Wed 10-Jun-09 18:53:03

Can she look out for au pair type jobs on gumtree - that sort of thing would give her experience of older children and time to study during the day and at least bills and food are paid for. Although I don't think I would employ a 16 year old - I could entertain the idea of a 17year old live-in mother's help/au pair so there is probably a market for her skills.

nannynick Wed 10-Jun-09 19:14:27

Is nannying really something she is suited for, if she couldn't cope with 3-days per week for 2 years at college. Why wouldn't she cope with college?

A little while back, we chatted about what qualifications the nannies who regularly post on Mumsnet had. Many of us had a high level of education - Degree, HND, A-Level. I felt quite the dunce as my highest qual is an HND.

A nanny needs to be able to teach children about the world around them. Children ask the strangest of questions - the 4 year old I care for loves asking questions about Gravity, the solar system, photosynthesis, that kind of thing. While you don't need a degree to answer those questions... having a good all round academic background does help in being a nanny.

Supernanny19 Wed 10-Jun-09 19:29:04

she should become an aupair thats where most unqualifed nannies start.

Millarkie Wed 10-Jun-09 19:47:21

Is it staying at home, or the study (or both) that she wants to avoid?

tensing Wed 10-Jun-09 20:38:41

Staying at home.
She doesn't have a very settled home life at the moment and really does need to move away from the estate on which she lives or she may well follow in the footsteps of so many of her peers and end up as a young mum with 6 kids in tow by the age of 20.

PixiNanny Wed 10-Jun-09 22:53:16

She won't be able to do a level 3 course unless she has sole charge of children, in which case, looking for a mother's help job could put her in that position, though it's not recommendable for her age I'd say. Tell her to get a level 2 and work to level 3, that'll bring her to her 18th birthday easily, if not 19th because I hate to say it, but people do not take young nannies seriously! I've been asked many times if I'm mistaken grin

I think her options are limited until she's 18, and even then still because she's young, maybe once she's 17 and maybe got an NVQ 2 she can go do some au pairing before coming back to work on a level 3 maybe in a full time nanny job?

Honestly, it's the age that is a problem. I'm 20 and have problems and I'm not even a proper nanny, I'm in an APs position whilst I study for my level 3... I feel that is the only way we get taken seriously as younger nannies, if we have qualifications.

In regards to different settings for level 3, I don't think that you do require it? But then it was never mentioned for me as I already was volunteering at a school so maybe you do?

frAKKINPannikin Thu 11-Jun-09 08:28:15

You need to be working with a range of children's ages which, when nannying, can be quite difficult but it's easy in a setting like a nursery or a childminder's. Personally I think it's very valuable to have exposure to different settings.

Maybe she could combine an au pair job (before/after school or nursery care) with a full-time college course? If she's prepared to be flexible about where she works then she may be able to find something.

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