logo

ChildForum Early Childhood Education Nationwide Network
Promoting quality, valuing knowledge, advancing thinking and working together for the benefit of children, services and the sector

Follow us on FacebookFollow us on Twitteryoutube

Member Login

Member space

 

Latest Early Childhood Alert, No. 23, 2018

Editor's note

In the past week a business lobby group (the Early Childhood Council) was promoted by the media as representing our sector - which it does not.  Were it not for signs from the Ministry of Education suggesting it supports the ECC and the silence of Minister Chris Hipkins concerning its crazy/ harmful ideas on a shortage of teachers, it would not matter. 

We take a closer look at this, and bring you facts and opinion.

 

1. Get the Facts on the Teacher Shortage

  • Is it true as TVNZ reports that an 'expert' says a survey found a third of centres can’t fill staff vacancies? That there is a need to reduce the number of teachers to children? That it is fine to drop the quality of care and education for children? That we need to open up a whole new system of exploitation of migrants and replace kiwi teachers with cheaper/ compliant migrants?
  • How are centres doing when it comes to meeting legal requirements for qualified teachers?
  • Is a lack of staff forcing services to close?
  • Is teacher turnover higher than usual and if so in what parts of the sector is staff churn typically highest?
  • Are there obvious biases that restrict teacher supply, and if so what are these and what is being done to address the biases?

> Let’s look at the facts

 

2. Opinion:  What the ECC says its centres want will not be best for early childhood education

The ECC prefers cheap migrant labour over providing great workplaces for staff and supporting kiwi teachers to be paid a fair wage that reflects their value, training and experience.  

Bypassing strict immigration and visa requirements will inevitably see exploitation of people who are truly desperate to do whatever they have to, to get into NZ and get out of the poor/ or authoritarian country they currently live in. The longer this then goes on, making employer profitability dependent on cheap/ compliant/ scared labour, a strategy will develop of laying off kiwi early childhood teachers and simply hiring replacement teachers from overseas.

The ECC wants at least the same level of taxpayer funding for centres as is now, but with fewer qualified ECE teachers, more children to teachers, and lower quality staffing.

Read more: "A recipe for disaster"

 

3. Goodbye to election promises of funding for 100% qualified teachers in teacher-led services

The ministry has signalled that it wants to keep wages in our sector low by bringing in cheap migrant labour to meet demand by some for-profit childcare providers for 'suitable' staff. It wants early childhood teaching to be added to the Essential Skills in Demand (ESID) list so ECE service providers do not have to show that there were no suitable NZ applicants and can bypass visa requirements.

This will come as a huge disappointment to everyone who voted for a change in government and believed in the election promises of Labour, NZ First and the Greens. All three parties campaigned on the promise of support for 100% qualified ECE teachers and Labour also promised to lift the current legal requirement from 50% to 80%.

Immigration NZ is seeking submissions on early childhood teaching being included in the ESID list

> Read more 

 

4. How to be an early childhood service that doesn't have staffing hassles

> Join the conversation and learn more

 

5. Quality - the best for children in centres and home-based ECE

Research on quality from a developmental psychology perspective has focused on structural features of the early childhood setting. The five most important features are:

  • group size (also known as class size),
  • trained staff,
  • teacher-child ratio,
  • the amount of space per child, and
  • teacher turnover/ staff stability.

The first four features can be controlled through government regulation the fifth feature depends on the service provider/ employer as it is difficult to regulate.

The regulatory requirements for each of these features are outlined in an article, along with what to achieve if you are a service provider and what to look for if you are a prospective employee or parent looking for a quality service.

> Minimum licensing standards and quality standards

  

6. Sun protection begins in Term 4 - What you need to know, discussions, policy template, and resources

> to provide or not provide sunhats for children - an open discussion in the Forum

conversation ideas for talking with children about sun protection and activities: suitably themed songs and rhymes, group games, science activities, art and craft, and drama/ pretend play 

> sun protection policy for centres and home-based service. Includes:  legal and professional accountability, guidelines for policy development, the recommended frequency of and reasons for review, and a policy templates  (ECE service info)

> the responsibilities of the service provider for sun protection and knowledge all team members should have (ECE service info)

> tips and recommendations for creating and maintaining effective and acceptable natural shade and built shade structures at ECE services (ECE service info)

> best practices recommended by World Health Organisation, the NZ and Australian Cancer Societies, and health experts for best clothing, sunscreen, sunhats, shade protection for children at centres, when travelling in cars and going for walks, etc.  Also, details what you need to know about special considerations for infants. 

 

7. Students and research supervisors - call for papers

A special issue of the NZ-International Research in Early Childhood Education Journal is in preparation to showcase the best of student writing on issues relevant to early childhood education. Submissions to the special issue are now invited. 

> Learn more about this wonderful opportunity

 

Coming up

Diwali - lovely activity ideas for young children and teachers in homes and ECE services

Guy Fawkes 5 Nov - lots of great age appropriate ideas for young children and a link to info on safety issues and discussion

  

For more

Go to our website www.childforum.com  You will find practical advice, policy guidance, the latest news, survey reports, original research and analysis. 

Have you got password access for the online articles and materials?  Check your personal or ECE service membership is current - or Join Us.  Any questions please contact us through the contact form on our website. 

Free E-Newsletter

Receive the free Early Childhood Alert.

captcha 

We hate spam as much as you, we will not sell your contact details to anyone.

You can unsubscribe at any time.

Read our Privacy Policy here.

Don’t miss out any longer, click the button below to join ChildForum

Join Us!

child-with-binoculars-small

 

Subscribe now for information you can trust, expert advice and research, as well as access to quality resources

We are confident you will be delighted to discover and experience the benefits of membership - so join now and make this message for non-members disappear from your screen. 

Membership Options

Individual
Member

Who is this for?
Any person who has an interest in early childhood education and care or who works directly with children.

$98.00 12 months from the date of joining
$60.00 6 months student-only

The membership belongs to you, and you only. Enjoy your own personal username and password.

ECE Service Organisation
Member

Who is this for?
Centres, home-based, hospital-based, playgroups ... established or newly licensed. Gives access to professional & research materials enjoyed by individual members PLUS service operation and management area. 

$198.00 12 months for a standalone licensed service
Special rates for organisations with more than 1 licence

The membership belongs to your whole organisation, team members and managers.

Library NZ-International Research
in ECE Journal Subscriber

Who is this for?
Universities, Polytechnics and organisations wishing to have online access to the NZ-Int Research in ECE journal (includes all past and current issues) 

$125.00 annual subscription, renewable in November each year

A username and password for your library users linked to your IP address.