I'm writing today in the forum after discussing Workforce issues with Directors.

Practical solutions to real problems is what is needed, Directors and Employers are at the round table discussing workforce issues. Recruiting qualified Educators, getting well trained Educators, retaining Educators and having inhouse mentoring and training programs to address immediate needs. Back in 2016 the Commonwealth Governments Early Years Workforce Strategy discussed the actions that needed to happen and how they needed everyone

“Working together to achieve change”

“Responsibility for developing a sustainable ECEC workforce is shared between service providers; early childhood educators; the peak bodies for the sector, including unions; the Australian, state, territory and local governments; training providers; families; and communities. All of these stakeholders contribute to workforce development for the sector and can drive change by working together.” The Early Childhood Education and Care Workforce Strategy for Australia 2012–2016 SCSEEC.

Are we doing that in 2019? On the eve of the new Training Package bringing out new Qualifications for the sector or do we need to be reminded? Let us get that round table coming up with local solutions there are many good ones those same Directors are rattling them off right now. Many of these services are Privately operated and have developed because of the demand for childcare the urban demand. No we are not talking about remote or regional we are talking about right here in Darwin and in Alice Springs.

We are finally at a place for parents and families that wish to find a position for their child/ren that they will have options and will be able to complete orientation at 2 maybe 3 Early Childhood Services/Centres and also have options of Family Day Care Educators to choose from. No longer do parents feel guilty about placing their child into a service as it will have to suffice as it was the only service with a vacancy. Parents are now looking for that Quality in a Service checking on their Assessment & Rating and making well considered decisions before choosing a Service.

As a sector we are overjoyed at this prospect, as all ECEC Professionals agree it has been the united effort by government, unions, training organisations, services and educators  themselves that are now being reflected in the National Quality Framework (NQF) Snapshots from ACECQA including the progress and results of quality assessment and rating against the National Quality Standard (NQS) for Darwin Palmerston and Rural  and all NT approved Services.

The NT Government have put forward their Strategy for ECEC “Starting Early for a Better Future Implementation Plan 2018-22”, the Unions (United Voice) are working hard with the Big Steps Campaign, Training Organisations (RTO's) have risen to the occasion here in the NT and Employers are happy with the Quality of Training they are being provided by local Providers. And many Services Employers and Educators have great Workforce Development strategies in place.

Fantastic results! Let’s make sure we are all on the same page and keep Networking and contributing and supporting each other through the next lot of changes for the Sector 2020 and beyond.

Deb Rowe will be facilitating networking Meetings for all the Sector in 2019 the first meeting will be held at Palmerston at the Kentish Training Rooms 5 McCourt Road Yarrawonga

Wednesday February 13th at 9.30 am. Invites will be sent over the next week confirming Venue Date Time and asking for RSVP's