Communities at work, Canberra’s largest child care provider, has confirmed her support for the proposed changes to the childcare subsidy system announced by the Australian government and also highlighted additional priority areas such as support for vulnerable children and the persistent labor shortage on which concentrate to move forward.
Lee Maiden, CEO, said, âCommunities @ Work supports all policies that help families and children access affordable, high quality education and child care. We welcome the announced changes to the child care subsidy system, which will remove some of the barriers to labor market participation and provide many families – especially women – with more career opportunities.
However, Ms. Maiden also pointed out that many low-income families and children will not reap the benefits of this investment due in large part to the targeted nature of the planned changes which only affect families with more than one child and families who earn more than $ 180,000 per year. .
âDisadvantaged children are much less likely to attend early childhood education and care because of the costs,â Ms. Maiden said. âFor vulnerable children who are already disadvantaged, the social, emotional and economic benefits of quality early education and care are enormous. Unfortunately for many vulnerable children and families, the changes the federal government has made to the child care subsidy will not help.
“We would really like to see further simplification and improvement of the subsidy system for child care, with a particular focus on reducing the out-of-pocket expenses of low-income families with vulnerable children.”
Workforce crisis highlighted as major challenge, new demand adds more pressure
In addition, the statement highlighted the ongoing workforce challenges that are currently impacting the early childhood education and care sector, with shortages of educators impacting on the capacity of organizations to provide ECEC services to their communities.
Kellie Stewart, Director of Children’s Services at Communities @ Work, said: âIt’s such a shame, but sometimes we just can’t offer families a place in our department or we can’t offer it every day. that their children need. We are continually recruiting and training new educators, but we are simply unable to meet the demand. “
Ms. Maiden added, âWe work hard to ensure we attract, train and retain the highest quality educators, and we strive to be an employer of choice, providing value-based employment, with significant and attractive social benefits. â
Communities @ work invests significantly in training and continuing professional development through its accredited training organization and has also established mentoring and coaching networks for educators, and has received a number of awards, including the Major Employer of the Year at the ACT Training Awards for two consecutive years. .
âWith this announcement, we anticipate that more families will need education and care, and to ensure we can meet this growing demand, we need additional investments to support continuing education and professional development for educators. . Ms. Maiden said.