ELA’s Safeguarding Page


Level 5 Early Years Lead Practitioner Standard

New Level 5 Early Years Lead Practitioner

An overview of the role:

Relevant for early years lead practitioners who are looking to develop further their knowledge, understanding and skill in being an influential practitioner, working directly with children, skilfully leading day to day practice at an operational level.

As active practitioners they are effective role models of play based learning, supporting others to develop their own practice. They are highly skilled professionals who take an operational lead for the care, learning and development of all young children within their care, adapting to individual needs providing inclusive and holistic provision. They engage with sector developments both locally and nationally, with a commitment to developing their own professional and educational competencies.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with children aged birth to eight years, families, practitioners, other professionals and appropriate agencies. An employee in this occupation will be responsible for supporting the quality of learning and development in their setting. They lead on the operational aspects of this provision and are typically responsible for leading other practitioners.

Typical Job titles:

● Room leader, Deputy manager, Assistant manager, Senior     practitioner, Lead practitioner, Pre-school leader, Early years coordinator.
● Early years practitioner, Nursery officer, Early years officer, Key worker, Senior key worker, Baby room leader, Lead baby room
practitioner, Play leader
● Early years support worker, Higher level teaching and learning assistant, Early years foundation Stage lead or coordinator
● Pastoral care manager, Pastoral assistant, Education welfare officer
● Specialist practitioner in child development (health), Community nursery nurse, Health play specialist, Hospital play worker.

Through this Apprenticeship, the Early Years Practitioner can gain

The level 5 Lead Practitioner apprenticeship
Develop the deeper understanding of child development and how to apply this when leading changes to practice
The opportunity to develop and work towards a level 2 Functional Skills in Maths and English if this or the equivalent has not been achieved
Confidence in leading departments, mentoring others and implementing change to policies and procedures
Recognition of possessing the knowledge, skills and behaviours as set in the apprenticeship standard

Benefits to the Setting will include


A fully qualified Level 2 Practitioner to be counted in ratio.

Practitioning Individual

A Practitioner who has knowledge of how to support the team

Practitioning Individual

A reflective Practitioner who can evaluate practice

Practical Experience

An Early Years Practitioner who has, showing the appropriate practice, assessed against nationally recognised standards 

First Aid

Will have a staff member who understands the importance of the Early Years Practitioner’s role

What Values Do We Add at ELA?

Passion for Well-being

Blended delivery models including workplace assessments, virtual coaching, and group workshops

A dedicated personal tutor to deliver training, and guide throughout their programme.

group workshops remote ELA
We are passionate about mental health and well-being in the workplace
Supporting learners’ individual pace and catering to their unique learning styles
Face to face interaction ELA
Collaborative line manager, mentor and employer engagement to enhance learner experience with regular surveys and reporting
Online short courses ELA
Continual review of our curriculum to deliver strong intent, implementation, and impact of learning

Delivery & Assessment

Typical Course Duration

26 months

Monthly Workshops

Monthly workshop delivery for the first 16 months with 1-1 tutor support every month


E-portfolio access to track progress, upload work and communicate with your Tutor

Online Access

Online resources to support the teaching delivery

Functional skills

Monthly support to achieve English and Maths Functional skills
(where applicable) with the opportunity of receiving support from a
specialist functional skills tutor.

End Point Assessment

Observation, question session conducted by the end point assessor.
Case study, report, presentation and questioning.

Commitment Required from Learner and Employer

To meet deadlines agreed and set by the Tutor

All to attend 8-10 weekly progress reviews with the tutor

Access to a work-based Mentor

Attendance at monthly 1-1 learning sessions with their Tutor

Access to 20% ‘Off the Job Training’ Time

Support skills-based learning at the setting as directed

Time allowed for the Apprentice to complete assignments

Attendance at scheduled virtual workshops to support learning

Compilation of work-based portfolio of evidence


Promote the health and well-being of all children
Self-regulation and resilience through learning rich environments,
opportunities for challenging play and a healthy attitude towards risk taking.

Provide playful, sensitive interaction opportunities
Opportunities that reflect children’s needs, interests and motivations in order to facilitate and extend deep level learning

Participate in and lead daily routines
Also practice, including children’s’ personal care, play and maintaining the physical environment

To be an effective key person and advocate for the child
Supporting the child’s developmental, emotional and daily needs within a secure and caring relationship. To ensure the effectiveness of the key person approach across the aspect or environment for which they are responsible

Demonstrate leaderful practice
Through the effective deployment of resources and practitioners keeping the child’s voice and needs central to practice

Maintain effective administrative systems and records
Including development records, assessment, report writing and record keeping, such as risk assessments and safeguarding concerns

Establish engaging, inclusive and collaborative relationships
Participate in multiagency meetings.Enable and facilitate practitioners to develop professional relationships with parents, carers and multi-agencies to meet the individual needs of the children

Promote, demonstrate and facilitate a clear understanding of diversity and equality
To support all children, including those with additional needs, those of high ability, those with English as an additional language and those with disabilities. Engage and support inclusivity of all children within their social and cultural context.

Reflect and build on practice
Through ongoing professional enquiry and action research to contribute to the pedagogical approach of their setting. To be accountable for day to day practice, longer term planning, management and training within the specific aspect or environment for which they are responsible

Commit to becoming a reflective practitioner
Enhancing skills and knowledge to improve pedagogical practice. Guide
and support the development of the reflective practice of others

Work in collaborative partnership with parents and carers
In the planning, implementation and review of strategies in place to support children’s experience, holistic development, learning and progress.

Ensure full safeguarding compliance
Legislation, policies and strategies at a national, local and setting based level to be promoted, implemented and embedded respectfully within practice, providing appropriate support to colleagues as, or supporting, the Designated Safeguarding Lead

Initiate continuing professional development opportunities
In response to identification of strengths and weaknesses both
personally and within your team. Provide constructive feedback on
points of practice on an informal day to day basis and contribute to
formal performance management as necessary

Health and Safety
Ensure compliance with all Health and Safety legislation, policies and strategies at a national, local and setting based level.

Leadership and Management
To lead and manage across the area, aspect or environment for which they are responsible for.

To take the lead and provide support in disseminating best practice
In the use of observation, assessments and planning to meet children’s needs and extend their holistic development within the aspect or environment for which they are responsible.