What training is needed and how to access it
In the early days of the OSCAR sector our mantra was “more than just baby-sitting!” OSCAR work makes big demands on your personal resources and requires skill.
As part of the “human services” sector, OSCAR has many core competencies in common with other care/education/recreation professions such as Youth Work, Early Childhood Education, Fitness and Recreation and Elderly Care.
Training standards and requirements
The is no required "OSCAR qualification" for staff employed in OSCAR services, however basic training requirements do apply to all OSCAR services.
Firstly, as a workplace there is a legal requirement under the Health and Safety in Employment Act to adequately train staff in:
On-going monitoring of staff is also a legal duty. The Act states that employers should ensure that a staff member is competent to carry out their duties safely, OR they should be supervised by a suitably competent person.
Additional training requirements are outlined in the OSCAR Standards. The standards state that "The provider must be able to demonstrate that all staff have received training on policy and procedures, including abuse prevention, for recognising indicators of abuse and procedures for reporting concerns about abuse. Staff must also be trained in expectations of behaviour and their duty of care. Training should be held once a year."
In addition, the OSCAR Standards outline these training requirements:
What are the Options for Training?
Programmes take a variety of approaches to meet these training requirements. This includes doing their own in-house training, either run by people within their organisation or with external trainers. This do-it-yourself approach is quite common in the sector and a suitable option where you have casual and short term staff who need to learn how your programme operates and to get familiar with essential procudures for supervison of children, behaviour guidance and keeping safe.
Accessing external training opportunities can be more of a challenge. Timing, location and cost can all pose potential barriers for people wishing to develop OSCAR skills and knowledge. What is available locally will vary from region to region. Some areas have regular provision of training opportunities that are designed for OSCAR staff (read more below and in the right column). It may also pay to look at courses offered for other sectors such as teaching, youth work, sport and recreation.
In some areas local operators will get together and share the costs of a training course or draw on their own staff expertise to upskill the group. To keep in touch with local training options some regions have local networks you can tap into.
First aid: There are often a range of options for courses and it pays to shop around. Again, some services will train all their staff together and shares costs by joining with some other local services for an in-house course. You might find it helpful to contact regional networks to tap into other programmes in your area.
Child protection training has in the past been provided by CYF staff but in many regions this is no longer available. Child Matters run a range of child protection courses, including some free courses through CYF, and OSCN have for many years used the services of Koru Corporation to run child protection courses in Auckland. This course could be offered outside of Auckland, if there was sufficient interest. Contact OSCN for more information. If you have other recommendation for contacts in your area for child protection training, please contact us.
OSCAR network workshops: In the South Island The OSCAR Network in Christchurch have a programme of workshops, including sessions in Nelson, Dunedin, Invercargill and Greymouth. In the North Island, The Out of School Care Network is offering a staff development module called "Tuning into your Children". If you would like this workshop in your region, please contact OSCN now. Also contact your regional networks to be kept advised of any training opportunities in your region.
Certificate in Out of School Care
South Island Training
North Island Training
Working Together (Child Protection) Seminars
Tuning in to Children