NCT, the UK’s largest charity for parents, and the University of Worcester have formed a new partnership to create a specialist college aimed at increasing the number of valuable courses for parents.
NCT has long been known for the support it provides to parents through the transition to parenthood. NCT’s antenatal courses, breastfeeding counselling and facilitated postnatal groups support and inform parents enabling them to feel confident and prepared.
Now NCT has designated Worcester as its ‘university partner of choice.’ The two organisations will work together to train NCT Practitioners, volunteers and subsequently parents across a range of issues relating to pregnancy, birth and parenthood.
Professor David Green, Vice Chancellor of the University of Worcester, said: “The University of Worcester has long enjoyed an outstanding reputation for the work in educating professionals to work with children – as midwives, teachers, specialist nurses and health workers, sports coaches, artists, illustrators and more. We are delighted to have been chosen to work with NCT to help parents in their transition to parenthood and will do all we can to help the Country’s parents and children get off to the best possible start.”
Clea Harmer, Degree & Diploma Manager at NCT, said: “We are looking forward to working in partnership with the University of Worcester, and developing new and exciting opportunities for helping parents in the transition to parenthood. The flexible training programme will allow students to specialise in a wide range of areas from antenatal education, breastfeeding counselling and postnatal group facilitation to new areas such as baby massage and working with young parents.
“Together, NCT and the University of Worcester can become the centre of excellence for transition to parenthood, offering a real career pathway for students. Qualifications will range from a Certificate of Higher Education and a Foundation Degree, up to Postdoctoral research opportunities. This exciting new partnership will help NCT to reach and support more and more parents and parents-to-be.”
NCT currently works with approximately 1,000 practitioners and 10,000 volunteers. It is hoped the new partnership will train many more to work with parents and parents-to-be. A range of new courses will be on offer, with the first programmes beginning in September 2012, taught by NCT tutors who will become associate lecturers of the University of Worcester.
There will also be work to develop research around birth and parenting with the University’s ability to offer PhD studentships on crucial questions.
The University of Worcester will also host NCT conferences and seminars.
The University of Worcester was selected by NCT because of the University’s experience and reputation for high quality training of professionals working with children in education and health care more broadly.
The University’s most recent evaluations from OFSTED are outstanding and the evaluations from the Nursing and Midwifery Council are five ‘goods’ – the highest grade possible. Last month the Child Workforce Development Council announced that the University is one of just eight institutions in England to win a major contract to educate Early Years Professionals.