Strict measures and funding amendments announced for Victoria
All members should by now be aware that on Sunday 2 August 2020 a ‘state of disaster’ declared in Victoria, with Stage 4 lockdown measures announced by Premier Daniel Andrews for metropolitan Melbourne. For regional and rural Victoria, Stage 3 restrictions will apply from 11:59 pm Wednesday 5 August. Further details about businesses to close were announced yesterday Monday 3 August. The current advice from the Victorian Department of Education and Training states:
“ECEC services, including sessional kindergarten, in regional and rural Victoria under Stage 3 restrictions, can continue to operate, with appropriate risk-mitigation measures in place (unless instructed by the Department of Health and Human Services to close).
From Thursday 6 August, ECEC services in metropolitan Melbourne should only remain open to provide education and care for those children whose parents or carers are permitted workers and for vulnerable children.”
Our hearts go out to the many Victorian educators and services that are facing potentially unprecedented impacts as a result of the Stage 4 COVID-19 restrictions in place for metropolitan Melbourne and Stage 3 restrictions for regional Victoria.
Today the Minister for Education and the Prime Minister, the Hon Scott Morrison MP, announced additional funding streams for affected services which include the following measures:
- Parents will not be required to pay a gap fee when their children are not attending and the Australian Government will continue to pay their subsidies to child care facilities.
- Melbourne families in Stage Four lockdown will receive an additional 30 days, or six weeks, of allowable absences from child care.
- The Government will provide $16.3 million to fund a higher Transition Payment of 30 percent of pre-COVID revenue for Melbourne child care services.
- The Government will provide a further $16 million to fund an additional top-up payment for eligible services that receive low CCS payments and are experiencing very low attendance.
FDCA, on the basis of ongoing member feedback, continues to advocate to the Commonwealth Department of Education, Skills and Employment (DESE) and the Minister for Education, the Hon Dan Tehan MP. As soon any further information comes to hand we will dissect and disseminate the details for our members, and of course, we will continue to represent your interests in the design and potential amendments that may be required to additional supports for family day care.
Early Learning Matters Week 3-7 August
This week is Early Learning Matters Week (3–7 August), an opportunity for early childhood educators, parents, carers and community leaders around Australia to come together (online) to say why Early Learning Matters to you!
There are lots of ways to participate in Early Learning Matters Week 2020. Join the Early Learning Matters Week Facebook page and share photos of how you foster children’s learning or support early learning and care services, or post a message about why early learning matters to you.
Remember to use the tag #EarlyLearningMatters. For more suggestions on how to celebrate Early Learning Matters Week, take a look here.
Do you and your families know about the MyAus COVID-19 app?
The Australian Government is encouraging ECEC services and educators to share information about the MyAus COVID-19 app among families and service staff. The app is a multilingual mobile app for Australia’s culturally and linguistically diverse communities about COVID-19, its impact and available support.
The app is currently available in 24 community languages: Arabic, Cantonese, Mandarin, Russian, Somali, Vietnamese, Korean, Punjabi, Tamil, Thai, Japanese, Italian, Greek, Tagalog, Indonesian, French, Spanish, Khmer, Turkish, Persian, Dari, Urdu, S’gaw and Burmese.
Information provided by the app is in line with the current Government advice and is regularly updated to ensure it remains relevant and timely.
“Families in Focus” webinar series – Australian Institute of Family Studies
In June 2020, the Australian Institute for Family Studies (AIFS) held a webinar series, with the theme of “Families in Focus”. This series showcased some of the keynote speakers originally scheduled to speak at AIFS’ postponed 2020 Conference, and tackled some of the topics around wellbeing for families and children, including impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The webinar recordings are now available online at the AIFS website. Click here to access the full set of “Families in Focus” webinar recordings.
Second round of nominations published in the 2020 Excellence in Family Day Care Awards
Today FDCA is excited to announce the publication of the second round of nominations in the 2020 Excellence in Family Day Care Awards.
During the first two weeks of the 2020 Excellence in Family Day Care Awards we received over 3,000 nominations. This is an increase of 36% on last year's nominations at the same time!
Congratulations to all those who have been nominated and thank you to everyone who has placed a nomination thus far.
To view nomination lists for educators, coordinators and services, click here.
Please note that the nomination lists are correct as of 12.00pm on Monday 3 August. Updated lists, which will include those nominated this week will be published next week.
If you would like to nominate an educator, coordinator or service be sure to visit www.familydaycare.com.au/awards to place a nomination.
Don't forget to share the awards on social media
Did you know that you can help spread the word about the 2020 Excellence in Family Day Care Awards by sharing them on social media? By sharing our Awards posts on Facebook, you can help ensure that educators, coordinators and services will receive the recognition that they deserve.
To share our Facebook post, click here.
Sydney and Launceston National Engagement Program forums postponed
Due to the ongoing uncertainty regarding the developing COVID-19 situation we have made the decision to postpone the FDCA National Engagement Program forums that were scheduled to take place in Hornsby and Launceston in the coming months.
At this stage a decision has not yet been made in regards to rescheduling the events. Members who had registered to attend the events will be given first preference to register if we are able to reschedule the forum at a later date.
We thank you for your understanding and support of this decision. We hope to announce a new date for our National Engagement Program forums in the future and as your national peak body, we look forward to continuing to invest in the ongoing professional development of our members.