Anne-Marie Watson is a true professional in the world of childcare and education. She has a fascinating and varied work history, which all started when she chose to undertake an apprenticeship after finishing secondary school.
After spending a large chunk of her working life in traditional nursery settings, she has now worked with Interserve Learning & Employment for over thirteen years and is currently a performance manager in the East Midlands. We caught up with her to find out more about her story.
Anne-Marie told us: “When I left school, I thought I would go to college and do a childcare course. However, when I started college I found that this was not the way forward for me and I had to find another route to help me reach my dreams of working in childcare – I simply didn’t want to do anything else.
“So, I looked into my options and started a programme which supported me in finding an apprenticeship as a nursery assistant based in a local nursery. I worked as an apprentice for a year before I moved to another nursery where I continued to work as an assistant and consequently obtained a good level of knowledge and developed my childcare practices. In time, my experiences supported me to complete my NVQ Level 3.”
I then became a qualified nursery nurse, and soon after I moved on to become a room leader. My years working in nurseries meant I could develop and obtain a wide range of experiences. I worked in similar settings for many years and I am proud to say that I enjoyed every minute.”
She continued: “But a time did come where I felt I needed a change and wanted to experience something new.
“I had gained experience working in specialist schools and play work environments and this helped me to secure a job as a room manager. During my time in this role, the nursery where I was working decided to set up and open a new nursery. I helped to prepare and organise the launch, following OFSTED regulations every step of the way. I became the manager for the new nursery and I did this for five years.”
Becoming an Assessor
“I’ve always wanted to support others, and that’s why the role of an assessor appealed to me. So that’s where I took my experiences, knowledge and understanding next. I went for the interview with Interserve Learning & Employment and I was successful!
“Soon, I was a trainee assessor and working towards my assessor’s award, whilst also attending college in the evening. After three years, I moved into a quality assurance position with the same company, I completed my quality assurance award and worked in this area for four years.”
“That’s when I became a performance manager, a role I still hold to this day and one which has allowed me to complete my Level 5 leadership to management programme.”
High praise from the team
Anne-Marie’s manager and head of childcare, Karen Derbyshire couldn’t sing her praises loud enough. She told us: “Anne-Marie has worked for Interserve Learning & Employment for the last thirteen years, working her way up from trainee assessor to performance manager. She herself started her career as an apprentice and I think it’s fantastic to see her supporting others in their apprenticeship journey.
“Anne-Marie has proven that lifelong learning can support career progression and that apprenticeships can be used as a springboard to further opportunities within any given sector. Anne-Marie is a very accomplished manager who really drives her team to take pride in what they do.”
And would Anne-Marie change her route into the childcare profession you might ask? Well don’t worry, because we asked her that too! She replied with: “My career has been supported and boosted by apprenticeship programmes and I would never change the pathway I chose.”
Are you interested in becoming an apprentice in childcare and education? Whether you’re about to leave school or just looking for that next step into an exciting and rewarding career, we can help you, contact Interserve Learning & Employment here https://learning-employment.com/contact/.