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Qualification of childcarer (early childhood education and care)

  • Professional qualification
  • Nationwide
  • Public service

Occupation description: Responsibilities of a childcarer in early childhood education and care.

Early childhood education and care refers to a planned and goal-oriented entity of education, upbringing and care, with an emphasis on pedagogy. Early childhood education and care covers ages 0 - 7.

To qualify as a childcarer in early childhood education and care in Finland, you must complete a Vocational Qualification in Education and Guidance, or a Vocational Qualification in Social and Health Care or other equivalent qualification as well as a sufficient amount of training in the care, upbringing and education of children.

Do the following

When applying for a decision from the Finnish National Agency for Education

1. Fill in the electronic application from according to the instructions.

2. Attach the required documents.

3. Send the application to Finnish National Agency for Education.

Required documents

When submitting your application, enclose copies of the following documents:

  • Degree/qualification certificate
  • transcript of studies
  • Proof of nationality, e.g. an extract from the Population Information System in Finland or copy of the ID page of your passport
  • Document verifying name change (if applicable).

If you are an EU/EEA national and you apply for recognition of professional qualifications obtained in an EU/EEA member state, enclose also:

  • A certificate issued as evidence of professional qualifications, if such a document is issued in the country where you have obtained your professional qualifications (e.g. document on teacher registration)
  • If applicable, certificates of professional experience and certificates of life-long learning.

Required translations

Provide a translation of each document into Finnish, Swedish or English if the original document is in a language other than Finnish, Swedish, Danish, Dutch, English, Estonian, Icelandic, French, German, Norwegian or Spanish. The translator must be an authorised translator in Finland or an official translator in the source country, working in the language pair in question. Translations done by the body that has issued the original document are also accepted.

To whom and on what terms

You can apply for a decision on eligibility from the Finnish National Agency for Education if:

1. you have completed a training that qualifies you as a childcarer in early childhood education and care in another EU / EEA country or Switzerland, and

2. you are a citizen of an EU or EEA country or have a document that entitles you to be treated in the same way as EU citizens.

You can also apply for a decision on eligibility if you are a national of a Member State, have obtained a qualification outside the EU and EEA, your professional qualification is recognised in another Member State and you have worked in the profession for at least three years in the country where your professional qualification is recognised.

You can contact the Finnish National Agency for Education for more information on decision-making criteria.

A fee is charged for the service.

The range of fees collected for a decision is €420 - €664. The fee is €420 when the decision concerns eligibility for one post or position. The fee is increased by €122 for any additional eligibility; however, the maximum surcharge is €244.


Processing time

The Finnish National Board of Education is obliged to make the decisions on the recognition of professional qualifications within four months of receipt of all documents. For other decisions, the law does not specify a maximum processing time. The processing of an application takes on average 2-3 months counting from the date on which all the necessary documents were provided.

Background information

Finnish National Agency for Education decides on the eligibility that a foreign qualification gives for positions in the early childhood education and care, teaching, fire and rescue services, and positions for which a Master of Laws degree completed in Finland is required.

Basic information

The service is provided byFinnish National Agency for Education
Responsible for the serviceFinnish National Agency for Education
Area Whole Finland
Available languagesFinnish, Swedish, English
Text edited by: Finnish National Agency for Education
Updated: 8/28/2020