Wednesday 3 August 2016
Local government operating childcare services is proving to be a major force in the education and care professions’ drive for quality with government owned and operated services far exceeding the standards delivered by private for profit services.
Bega Valley Shire Council’s Manager, Children, Family and Ageing, Kristina Brenner, said more than 50 per cent of State and Territory and local government services have been independently rated as operating well above the profession’s national standards, compared with just 18 per cent of private for profit operators.
“These results come from the Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority’s quarterly report, and demonstrate the importance of investment in educational programs for young children and in ensuring that the right compliance and safety standards are being met,” she said.
“Of the four Children’s Services that Bega Valley Shire Council operates, two have been independently rated this year and both were assessed as ‘Exceeding National Quality Standard’, which is the highest possible achievement.
“Our other two Centres have yet to be independently assessed.
“In our Shire it is fantastic to note that a number of not for profit services have received similar outstanding accreditation results against the National Quality Standards.
“However, as childcare providers, Council plays a unique role in meeting the needs of children with additional needs and in supporting low income, disadvantaged or vulnerable families in their local communities.
“This investment is critical to their long-term success in school and life,” she said.
“We have also played a major role in keeping a lid on excessive costs and facilitating access to affordable early childhood education and care.
“Fees are also reinvested back into services, funding new educational and capital resources including playground upgrades.”
Bega Valley Shire Council operates a range of early education and care services including Bandara Children’s Services, Eden Preschool, Eden Childcare Centre and Sapphire Mobile Preschool.
The Centres specialise in long day care services and preschool education, with daily cooked lunches provided to children at some of the sites.
Fees for each service are kept as low as possible, with significant reductions available for Health Care Card holders and additional subsidies for Aboriginal families.
To enquire about vacancies, enrolment or fees, contact Children’s Services Finance Officer Mary Grealy on 6499 2118.