Naturally Learning Ltd is a Cornwall-based day nursery operator comprising of three nurseries situated in Poltair, Charlestown and Truro. The OFSTED Outstanding nursery employs 45 people across the three sites and specialises in quality childcare for children aged 0-5 years. Naturally Learning has recently refurbished the nurseries and with ERDF funding was able to increase the number of staff and grow the business.
What were the businesses issues/challenges to undertake training or to take on an apprentice/s?
Due to the nature of the industry, within a nursery environment there is a legal requirement to have qualified staff and a certain ratio of staff to children. With the teams focus on the business and the children, keeping them safe, this can affect the consideration of apprentices.
Naturally Learning has a very positive reputation with customers and to keep up the OFSTED Outstanding achievement the company has high expectations and requirements of staff. They are required to be knowledgeable and experienced which makes it difficult initially for apprentices to succeed the brief.
Recruiting their apprentice
Naturally Learning took on a Level 3 Early Years Educator apprentice and by training with the individual in their environment meant that the company’s ethos and beliefs are embedded.
To meet their high expectations and learn about the company’s ethos and beliefs, apprentices have been provided with a tailored support programme that runs alongside their college qualification. This programme focusses on aspects of the job that Naturally Learning feel are important as a business.
What impacts and benefits has the apprentice had on the company?
Naturally Learning has thrived in recruiting apprentices in their team and would look to do this again in the future. By training their apprentices in house this will benefit the company in the long run by resulting in the perfect staff member ready to employ, saving on recruitment time and costs. Not only will the individuals be childcare qualified, but they will know how to represent Naturally Learning perfectly.
The process at the nursery, including their support programme has meant that their apprentices know the business inside and out, become part of the team and end up staying on after their apprenticeship has finished.
“Taking on an apprentice has provided us with enthusiastic young people who are not only willing to learn, but become part of our team at Naturally Learning Ltd. By training in house we believe we can create the next generation of outstanding educators.”
Sarah Hood, Nursery Manager at the Truro Nursery
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