Early Years Practitioner

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Early years practitioners look after and educate children from six weeks to five years of age. Occasionally they look after children between five and eight years old.

They may also be known as nursery workers, early years workers or child development officers.

The Work

You could be:


The figures below are only a guide. Actual pay rates may vary, depending on:

Modern Apprentices would usually start on the National Minimum Wage (NMW) apprentice rate. At present the apprentice rate, for those aged under 19 or aged 19 or over and in the first year of their apprenticeship, is £4.81 an hour (1 April 2022).

Starting salaries for qualified early years practitioners in Scotland vary.

In private nurseries, hourly rates can be around £7.00 to £9.00 an hour.

Salaries in local council nurseries can vary but usually start from around £21,500 to £23,500 a year, rising to around £28,500 with experience.

A manager or lead practitioner can earn from around £30,000 to £35,000 a year.


Workforce Employment Status

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Getting In

In Scotland, there are several ways to qualify.

What Does it Take?

You need to be:

You should have:


Getting On

More Information

Due to the Scottish Government increasing the number of funded nursery hours, there will be an increase in the number of jobs available in early learning and childcare. Find out more from their Early Learning and Childcare Careers website.


Courtesy of Careersbox


The following organisations may be able to provide further information.

Early Learning and Childcare Careers
Website (2):

This website hosted by the Scottish Government provides information on how to get a career in early learning and child care.

Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC)
Tel: 0345 60 30 891
Website (2):
Twitter: @SSSCnews

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