Applaud childcare sector boost

CHILDCARE Centre operators have welcomed the State Government’s historic move to ‘supercharge’ the sector through a $281.6 million workforce package in the 2022/23 NSW Budget.

The package includes early childhood teacher higher education scholarships of up to $25,000, VET scholarships of up to $2,000 and employer supplements for staff retention.
Many staff left when parents started pulling their children out of childcare due to the pandemic, especially casuals not eligible for JobKeeper and when the Federal Government introduced its temporary free childcare package, centres struggled to get the staff back.
Funtime Childcare Greenacre Director Louise Yaacouiban says the funding will definitely help with their struggle to retain staff.
“Since Covid, it’s been very difficult,” she said.
“Some staff left over the vaccine mandates and the growing responsibility on educators despite no change to award wages.
“Whatever the Government can do to help is great.”
An increasing time spent on paperwork is also being blamed for staff shortages.
“Less red tape would be very welcome by everyone,” Louise said.
“There should be more consistency too with ratings, assessments and spot checks.”
A Revesby Uniting Church Childcare spokesperson agreed.
“It’s been a challenging time and we look forward to this funding making a big difference,” she said.
Premier Dominic Perrottet says NSW is leading the nation in implementing measures to address workforce supply issues and build a sustainable pipeline of early childhood educators and teachers for tomorrow.
“This package will open new doors to attract, support and retain the best early childhood workforce in NSW, to create a brighter future for families and children,” he said.