Childhood, Youth and Education lecturers at the forefront of developing Welsh Early Years education and Care Policy and Practice.


Over the last few years, early years education and care in Wales has seen significant developments following the introduction of the Curriculum for Wales and the recent release of the Curriculum for Funded Non-Maintained settings (Welsh) and the Enabling Learning Guidance (Welsh). 

Curriculum for funded non-maintained nursery workshop

Here at The University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD), the Early Years team have played a key role in advising, writing, and developing the curriculum and guidance that will inform these policies, which are at the forefront of policy and practice within the non-maintained early childhood sector. 

The Early Years team within Childhood, Youth and Education are passionate about promoting the importance of the early years profession and ensuring that the hardworking and talented individuals that work within the sector are valued and recognised.

Natalie MacDonald Senior Lecturer and Programme Director for the 2- year evening flexi degree sits on the Foundation Phase Expert Advisory Group. She said:

"It is great to be part of something that will lead not only to a change in policy and practice but will support the recognition of the knowledge, skills and excellent practitioners that already exist in our non-maintained sector. Many of our students, particularly those on the evening degree programme, work full-time whilst studying and are at the heart of the practice this work is aimed at. This allows us to be at the forefront of the sector, playing a key role in policy and practice changes, ensuring our students have the most up to date knowledge and skills to work in the early years and education sector."

Natasha Young lecturer on the Early Years team with an extensive background in practice said:

“It was a pleasure to have been involved in the development of the enabling pathways and non-maintained curriculum documents. I am grateful to have contributed to a working group which consisted of practitioners and specialists in the field of early years, creating relevant and practical guidance to support a sector that is already achieving special things. Having been created by practitioners for practitioners, many of whom are students of ours at UWTSD, these documents focus on putting children’s needs and interests at the centre of what we do, something we should all be striving for in the early years.”

Both Natalie and Natasha have been engaging with third sector organisations such as Social Care Wales to support the dissemination of awareness and understanding of the non-maintained curriculum and are currently involved, along with other members of the early years team, in a project developing a package of e-learning to support the rollout.

Dr Nichola Welton Acting Academic Director for the Centre for Childhood, Youth and Education said,

"The early years and care team and their programmes at UWTSD are at the forefront of policy and practice developments in Wales.  This is illustrated by Natalie and Natasha’s involvement in the Foundation Phase Expert Advisory Group and the wider teams involvement of developing e-learning resources to support the introduction of the new Curriculum for Funded Non-Maintained settings.  As result students undertaking our programmes will be well prepared to be working within the new framework and provide the best possible outcomes for infants and young children in Wales."

Childhood, Youth and Education lecturers at the forefront of developing Welsh Early Years education and Care Policy and Practice.

Further Information

Lowri Thomas, Principal Communications and PR Officer

07449 998476