A new course at West Lothian College is encouraging men to consider a career in Early Learning and Childcare. With only 4% of the early years workforce being male, this course is designed to address the gender imbalance.
The course, which runs on Thursday evenings at the college, includes 13 men ranging in age from 16 to over 50.
The men have taken up the course for different reasons like wanting to switch careers into working with children or a desire to learn more about early development so that they can understand their own children better.
Scott McArthur, 46, told us why he joined the course:
“I’m a travel agent and it’s quiet just now so a lot of friends and relatives have said: ‘You’ve got three kids, you’re good with them, why don’t you think about doing something to work along with kids?’
“My wife is an advanced pupil support worker up at Ogilvie and said to me as well about getting on the supply list. So I applied, got in, and I’ve now started up at Beatley CHECK. This is just carrying on with that and possibly a new role in the future for me!
“I’m already thinking about doing the HNC, obviously if I carry on with what I’m doing already I’d like to get qualified with the HNC and have a look at what other options are out there for childcare. I can have a good look then when I’m doing the course and it might open my eyes to different avenues that I don’t really know of yet.
“It’s really informative as an introduction into seeing how necessary it is for men to be in childcare because I’ve seen it myself how few men are in the field. We’re only on week 5 but Ann is keeping us busy. It’s been quite enjoyable, we like to have a good laugh but as soon as we get a task we all knuckle down and get it done.