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Early Years Professionals: The Fifth Emergency Service

This is a cold, dark, unsettling evening. The Prime Minister has just announced a second national lockdown for England, re-issuing the stay at home order from last spring. As troubling as this announcement was, it is not the reason I have just sat at my desk to write this short article. This was...

“Primary & Secondary Schools, and colleges, must move to online-only teaching from tomorrow, except for vulnerable children. Everyone will continue to be able to access early years settings.

In a stroke, the Prime Minister has just placed 480,000 dedicated Early Years professionals into the same category of critical frontline workers as doctors, nurses, midwives, police officers and firefighters. Whilst others will inevitably debate the motives for Early Years’ exclusion from closures, my concern this evening is for you.

At That Nursery Life we are privileged to be the source of support many thousands of early years professionals turn to in their working lives. We know how hard these last 9 months have been already, and how much pressure you have each been under to provide caring, nurturing care to the children in your settings whilst simultaneously protecting your own health and wellbeing.

I spent many years running nurseries, and as I sit here tonight I really don’t know what I would say to a team of nursery staff tomorrow morning.

I do, however, have something to say to all of you, wherever you work:

You are not alone.

The That Nursery Life team and I come to work each day to do our best to help inform, equip and empower you, and we are ready to do exactly the same tomorrow, the next day, and every day that this pandemic continues. We are here to:

  • Explain the regulations, and how they relate to your work, in language that is clear and useful.
  • Bring you the best expertise available with advice on how to look after your mental health and wellbeing.
  • Listen to and amplify your concerns, questions, and stories when you share them with us across social media.
  • Bring you all the rest of our content from activity plans and book reviews, to pedagogical research and tips from sector experts.

We are here for you. I am here for you. Now more than ever this wonderful community of Early Years carers, educators, and professionals needs to come together.

If there is anything more that we can do, any question you need answered, or problem you need solving, drop us an email to, or grab us on the chat.

Thank you for your service.