Sunday, February 18, 2007

Mother of 5 gains qualification in childcare

From the 10 Downing Street website, thus demonstrating the frightening extent to which common sense has abandoned the seat of UK government:

"PM drops in for tea with childcare trainers

15 February 2007

A project to help unemployed people gain qualifications and employment in childcare was given a boost today when Tony Blair dropped in to see them.

The PM chatted with a number of people taking part in the Stepping Stones for Families project at the Glenburn Centre in Glasgow.

Those on the course will leave with a Scottish Vocational Qualification (SVO) and real career prospects in childcare.

They are provided with training, help with coursework and are put on placement in local nurseries.

One of those on the course was Christina Todd, 35, from Easterhouse. The mother-of-five said:

"I worked nights, my partner days and with five children to bring up it wasn't ideal. To come on this course was a great opportunity and I've just finished and got my SVQ qualification."

She now hopes to go on to a full-time job at a nursery.

So what happened to the 5 children, if their mother is only now deemed fit to take care of them?


Blogger dottyspots said...

*tongue in cheek*
Ah, that's simple, she gets a low-paid job in a day-nursery. Of course she will be unable to afford the full cost of childcare for her own children (whether that be during the day or before and after school) and therefore will receive working family tax credit to help pay someone else to look after her children. She can come home, get all the housework etc. done and perhaps, if she's very lucky have time to read a bedtime story (or perhaps the children will already be asleep by that point).

But hey, the number of people showing as in employment will increase and her children will have the benefit of getting used to being in an institution from as early-an age as possible...

What I really fail to understand is that someone in government hasn't asked whether it would make more sense for her to stay at home and care for her own children. At a push perhaps there could be some increase in child benefit - would this work out cheaper than supplementing people's childcare costs?

Perhaps I'm just very naive?

(ps. I've moved my blog:

4:43 pm, February 18, 2007  
Blogger Ruth said...

I find it astounding that a mother of 5 would think she needed a childcare qualification.

9:16 pm, February 18, 2007  
Blogger Rosie said...


11:47 pm, February 18, 2007  
Blogger mamadillo said...

ruth, of course it's so that she can get Paid Employment because, of course, no-one can get jobs without Qualifications... the fact that she very clearly was employed, though unpaid, due to having 5 children, just bypasses people's brains. 'Hidebound' springs to mind.

jumps out at me that my verification doofer starts with 'PMT'

6:54 pm, February 19, 2007  
Blogger Gill said...

Must update my blogroll! Got lots out out-of-date ones on there and needing to add new ones too..

Yeah the thing that made me wonder was that they've so totally lost it at No.10 that they didn't even see the irony in a mother-of-5 needing a childcare qualification. (Or have they...? ^^)

My logic went like this: she needs a childcare qualification to teach her how to take care of nursery children, which means she was presumably deemed incapable without it of taking care of any children, which would of course have to include her own - so were they removed for their own safety into the hands of a *qualified* person, or what?

Gah, I don't like where this is going at all.

9:21 pm, February 19, 2007  
Anonymous jax said...

um, can I be a sole voice for the possible pertinence of *some* enquiry into ppl's childcare skills before they start looking after other ppls? Not that it's necessary to actually go and study in all cases, but surely a small amount of investigation would be reasonable?

For example, some time this week in the news I read about a couple of women getting their toddlers to fight. Don't know how many children they have, but according to some of the logic expressed here, because they have children you would assume they were fit to look after other ppls?

I just keep thinking that there has to be a middle way.

10:48 pm, February 20, 2007  
Blogger Gill said...

I agree Jax, the fact a person has their own children wouldn't automatically convince me that I trusted them to care for mine, but then nor would the fact that they had a govt-sponsored childcare qualification. I'd want to spend some time getting to know the person, and even spend some time with the person and my child to see how they got along. I'd go further actually and say that I'd want to actually *know* the person before I gave them my child to look after, but I'm aware this is becoming increasingly difficult with the breakdown of longstanding communities.

But this is a deliberate development to make us more dependant on government. Remember the Rowntree studies on social bonds needing to be weakened in order to strengthen social bridges? We're seeing that policy being rolled out now, with the hard push towards govt-sponsored childcare programmes - hence the PM 'dropping into tea' and plugging it on the No10 website.

7:18 am, February 21, 2007  
Blogger Gill said...

AND I see the logical next step of this kind of thinking. The term 'parenting' is already being widely substituted for the term 'childcare', rendering the bloodlink between child and parent ('carer') to be increasingly less important.

There are already calls for compulsory parenting classes, and I wouldn't be at all surprised if this isn't a creep towards some kind of parenting qualification, without which people won't be allowed to keep their own children - at least not without close supervision.

Sounds mad now but just wait a few years: a few more increments and people will be discussing it seriously.

State -v- family: it's the next incursion. You can't have strong states and strong families, which is why govts continually seek to weaken the family unit with the aim of eradicating it completely.

Sorry to be a prophet of doom, but it's the way I see it, and the only hope we have of preventing it is to be aware that it's happening instead of sleepwalking our rights away, as we've done with so many other things - education laws, adoption laws etc.

7:33 am, February 21, 2007  

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