Your early years news, features and guides round up: 19th June – 14th July 2017

Here is our pick of the headlines affecting early years childcare in Wales from the past few weeks.

First of all…

We’d like to thank all that attended our 30th Birthday event last week. It was a great day & left us all with a great deal of food for thought! We’ll be feeding back, excuse the pun! In the next issue of smalltalk


Did you lose a black cardigan at the event? Please call 029 2045 1242 to claim it.





SASS part two

With just two weeks to go until the deadline for completion of your Quality of Care Review (SASS part two) we understand that many of you are waiting till the first week of the holidays to complete and submit.

If this is the case, we are gently nudging you to make sure you have read the guidance notes and have all the information you will need prior to breaking up.

Please be assured that Wales PPA is here to support you should you require any assistance but resource availability will depend on the demand. If the person who answers your call is unable to help, please don’t be offended or upset. We will make a note of your query and pass your details onto a colleague who is best placed to talk you through it, they will be in touch as soon as they can.

If your query is related to anything technical e.g. logging into your CSSIW online account then you must ring the CSSIW helpdesk on: 0300 025 6222 or email:

Our dedicated CSSIW webpage contains everything you need to know to prepare yourself

Tax-free childcare and 30-hours free childcare

Parents can apply for both through one online service. Please visit or  for more information.

Foundation Phase

Welsh Government have published How is my child doing in the Foundation Phase? This useful guide is designed to allow parents and carers to follow their childs progression the curriculum. Parents can also download and print this easy to follow set of infographics that help explain the principles the make up the foundation phase.

Digital Competence Framework

Feedback from digital pioneers and other stakeholders has been crucial in developing the Professional Learning Needs Tool – renamed to better reflect its purpose – which is designed to help practitioners identify the areas where they already feel confident and areas where they feel they need further development.

Business Wales

Starting a business? Growing your business? Business Wales has all the information, advice and guidance you need. Have you registered with their Business Online Support Service (BOSS)? There are 108 fully bilingual courses to choose from. It is online learning made simple. Why not give your business a boost!

As you know we’re very keen to support, guide and signpost our members who are ready to move on from the business, not due to financial reasons but because they are retiring, want a career change or even lifestyle change.

A new report published by Social Business Wales, Rooted and Resilient: The case for employee ownership in the Welsh private sector, calls for consideration of employee ownership as a viable approach for owners looking to plan their exit strategy. The report can be viewed via the hyperlink above.

Cymraeg 2050: Welsh Language Strategy

Welsh Government revealed this week its plans to increase Welsh medium education to get one million people speaking Welsh by 2050. Included are plans to create 150 more Welsh-medium nursery groups over the next decade, & plans to recruit more Welsh-speaking teachers

Have you visited the Cwlwm website recently? On there you will find lots of interesting case studies & resources published by the partnership. Recent guides published are: Cwlwm guide to wraparound care and A-typical childcare studies

You can also follow the partnership on facebook @cwlwm


Children’s health

Good news for young gnashers!! Children’s oral health in Wales is beginning to show signs of improvement.

We all know the power of a cwtch! Scientists say giving ‘cuddle’ hormones to children with autism improves their social skills.

From around the globe!

Early childhood education and care:

“When children are born, they don’t know any concept of race, ethnicity or citizenship. These are social constructs,” says Andreas Schleicher, Director, Directorate for Education and Skills for the OECD in Paris. Early childhood education and care is the first opportunity to introduce children to the diversity of society, and their experience there “can have a profound influence on their attitudes and behavior in life, and their trust in social institutions.” According to the new OECD report, “Starting Strong 2017: Key OECD indicators on early childhood education and care”, some countries are managing this process well and as a result see a “very modest impact of the social and immigrant background of children on their learning and social outcomes.” In other countries, the gap is huge and Schleicher believes the study clearly illustrates the difference educators and parents can make.”

This article examines how global communities are doing in terms of transitioning children from early childhood education to primary school. You’ll be pleased to know Wales gets a favourable mention!


“But parents should not assume that young children’s natural language abilities will lead to true grown-up language skills without a good deal of effort. Erika Hoff, a developmental psychologist who is a professor at Florida Atlantic University and the lead author of a 2015 review article on bilingual development, said: “For everybody trying to raise a bilingual child, whatever your background and reason, it’s very important to realize that acquiring a language requires massive exposure to that language.”

Interesting article focussing on bilingualism in the United States

Training, funding & job opportunities

Mudiad Meithrin wishes to train 100 learners to qualify to a level 3 diploma in Child Care, Learning and Development.

Applications are welcomed from candidates who wish to be considered to complete the course through Mudiad Meithrin.

There is no age or working status limit, but applicants must be over the age of 16, be fluent Welsh speakers or good learners, have left school and available to be on placement at a Cylch Meithrin/School for 16 hours per week, 39 weeks a year (a school year).

This qualification is free.

Closing date for applications: 18/08/17. The course will be held between September 2017 and August 2018.


Osborne Children’s Nursery in Newport are recruiting for a Nursery Nurse and a Chef / Cook. For more info visit:

Play Wales Spirit Conference takes place on 26 October 2017 at the Holiday Inn, Cardiff from more information and to book your tickets click here.

SAVE THE DATE: Our 30th Birthday event is taking place in Powys on Wednesday 20th September. To join in the fun call Viv Briskham or Emma Jones on 01686 622969.


Have you been inspired by any of the articles featured? Would you like to share your excellent practice with your fellow Wales PPA members? Or perhaps you would like to see articles written on specific subjects? If so, please email the Editor We’d love to hear from you. Afterall, smalltalk is your magazine!

…& finally

The first nursery in the UK to share the same site as a care home will open in September. Apples and Honey Nightingale will operate a 30-place full daycare setting in the grounds of Nightingale House, a residential care home for elderly Jewish men and women, based in Clapham, south west London and run by charity Nightingale Hammerson.

Apples and Honey Nightingale will operate a 30-place full daycare setting in the grounds of Nightingale House, a residential care home for elderly Jewish men and women, based in Clapham, south west London and run by charity Nightingale Hammerson.








2018-01-24T10:09:40+00:00 July 14th, 2017|