Nursery manager

Alternative titles for this job include Pre-school manager

Nursery managers run early years childcare centres, providing day care for babies and young children from birth to 5 years.

Average salary (a year)

£23,000 Starter

to

£45,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

35 to 40 a week

You could work

early mornings on a rota

How to become a nursery manager

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role

University

You can do a foundation degree or degree in child development or a related subject, for example:

  • early years education
  • psychology
  • childhood studies

Some nurseries may prefer you to have early years teacher status (EYTS).

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • at least 1 A level for a foundation degree 
  • 2 to 3 A levels for a degree

More information

College

You could start by doing a Level 3 Diploma for the Children and Young People's Workforce.

You can also do other childcare qualifications but they must be at least level 3 if you want to become a manager.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) for a level 3 course

More information

Apprenticeship

You could complete an advanced apprenticeship for the children and young people's workforce.

Once you have experience as a nursery worker you could apply for a job as a deputy manager or manager.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), usually including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

More information

Work

Many people start as a nursery worker. With experience and further training, you can apply for supervisor jobs then move into nursery management. You'll usually need at least 2 years' work experience with children in a nursery to apply to become a manager.

More information

Further information

You can get more advice about careers in early years education and training from the Professional Association for Childcare and Early Years and the National Day Nurseries Association

You can also find out more about working in childcare through the early years career progression map.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of teaching and the ability to design courses
  • customer service skills
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • leadership skills
  • the ability to work on your own
  • business management skills
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

Restrictions and requirements

You'll need to:

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day tasks could include:

  • creating a safe and stimulating environment to promote learning
  • updating parents and carers on children's progress
  • working with colleagues to meet children’s needs
  • checking equipment is in good condition

You’ll also have business responsibilities which could include:

  • recruiting staff and developing the nursery team
  • managing a budget
  • arranging marketing materials
  • keeping records and creating management reports
  • working within environmental, health and safety and fire regulations
  • keeping up to date with developments in early years care
  • building relationships with parents, carers, schools and childcare professionals
  • making sure the nursery meets Ofsted and early years foundation stage standards.

Working environment

You could work in a nursery.

Your working environment may be physically and emotionally demanding.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could become an area manager and look after the work of a number of nurseries. You might also consider setting up your own private nursery. Ofsted have information on how to do this.

You could become a trainer or training assessor for people studying for childcare qualifications. You could also move into inspection.

Taking a higher education qualification in early years or child development could help you move into teaching, children's nursing or social work.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Childcare Apprentice (level 2)

  • Wage : £156.00 Weekly
  • Location: Bradford BD9 5DF

Hairdressing Apprentice

  • Wage : £156.00 Weekly
  • Location: Birmingham B48 7LF

Courses In England

Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Workforce (Early Years Educator)

  • Provider: CRACKERJACK TRAINING LIMITED
  • Start date: 01 November 2019
  • Location: Birmingham

Early Years Workforce (Early Years Educator) - Level 3

  • Provider: BLACKPOOL AND THE FYLDE COLLEGE
  • Start date: 17 September 2020
  • Location: Blackpool

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