The Early Years Professional Status training programme delivered by the University of East Anglia is scheduled to cease operation by 2013.
The University of East Anglia (UEA) confirmed that the EYPS course would shut as it is operating at a loss.The university states that running EYP training does not feature in its long-term plans for the School of Education and Lifelong Learning, describing a new focus solely on teacher training and research. UEA has shared £3.4m of East of England consortium funding over three years to provide fully-funded EYPS places with no tuition fees. In a statement UEA said, ‘In the current economic climate, it is important for the university to focus on activities that are viable and that embody the values and priorities outlined in our draft corporate plan for the next five years.Unfortunately, the EYPS course has not recruited enough students and is loss-making. In addition, while we recognise the importance of early years education, this course does not chime with the university’s long-term priorities and ambitions.’ The university said that three members of staff were affected by the closure decision and that 29 EYP students who enrolled in January will finish their 12-month course in January 2013 at UEA.
The University of East Anglia said, ‘In terms of alternative provisions in the future, we have told the consortium that we are very happy to liaise with other HE providers in the area to ensure they will have excellent input.’ The Eastern Leadership Centre is the lead organisation for the East of England consortium, with partners University Campus Suffolk, the University of Hertfordshire and Pen Green Research Centre. Emma Slaughter, service leader (EYPS) at ELC, told Nursery World magazine that fully-funded places for EYP training would continue to be provided in Norfolk and that she did not envisage a drop in the number of applications. Following UEA’s decision to withdraw from EYP training, she said, ‘We’ll work collectively to ensure that there is EYPS provision in Norfolk.We’re considering various options for venues, including using children’s centres, local authority offices and other education providers.’
The East of England region is recruiting now for places to start in September. The closing date for applications is the 4th of May.