Customer service may not be the first thing one associates with being the principal of a childcare centre.

But trainee principal Belinda Lee, 49, is one of the many employees that childcare and pre-school chain NTUC First Campus has sent for training in dealing with customers.

As a more experienced worker, Ms Lee found the training to be "more of a refresher". But she said her teachers, some of whom are as young as 21, found it a great help. "Some are quite scared to deal with more challenging parents. This course helps to build up their confidence," she said.

The course is part of the Singapore Workforce Skills Qualifications (WSQ) framework for the sector. From teachers to cleaning staff and cooks, 1,707 NTUC First Campus staff have attended the two-day Provide Go-the-Extra-Mile for Service course so far.

Ms Lee is no stranger to WSQ training. She joined NTUC First Campus in late 2009 as a trainee teacher, and became a teacher after completing a specialist diploma in Early Childhood Care and Education.

Next month, when she finishes another diploma in leadership, she will shed the "trainee" tag and become a principal at My First Skool in Tampines.

"I could go on to do a degree or a master's - they're always saying we should upgrade. But I think I'll take a break for a while," she said with a laugh.