Help us improve our digital systems for your chance to win an iPad!
Family Day Care Australia (FDCA) is currently undergoing a review and audit of our digital systems including those provided to members. To do this we need your feedback and insights so that we can set our action plan for the future ensuring you get the best out of us and your membership.
Looking ahead into 2021 and beyond, we continue to strive to provide improved support through our systems and, as such, we ask that you take a short survey which typically only takes 5-10 minutes to complete.
Also... did we mention that helping us to improve our digital systems gives you the chance to win an iPad Air? To register for your chance to win an iPad Air please simply enter your email address when prompted at the end of the survey.
Please click here to access the survey.
We always endeavour to improve our support structures for members and advancing our digital infrastructure and services is crucial to achieving this. Please support us to better support you!
8-month FDCA 2021 Conference payment plan now available
FDCA is excited to announce the launch of a new 8-month payment plan for the FDCA 2021 National Conference.
The introduction of this new payment plan will continue to provide members with access to a payment option that allows them to pay for their conference ticket via small, manageable payments. The new 8-month payment plan will allow FDCA members to purchase conference tickets with 8 payments of $78.00.
To take advantage of the new payment plan you will need to be quick! Exclusive FDCA member-only access to the 8-month payment plan is only available for the month of January.
To access the new 8-month payment plan, click here.
Full ticket refunds available to members until 28 July 2021
We are mindful that for many, committing to the purchase of a conference ticket can be a difficult decision. To remove any concerns for members we are committed to offering full refunds to all members up until 28 July 2021.
About the FDCA 2021 National Conference
Taking place in Hobart from 28-30 October 2021, the FDCA 2021 National Conference is not only a first class professional development event, it’s a chance to discover why our southern neighbours are considered some of the happiest people in the world.
Join us for some well-deserved "me time" and take the opportunity to network with leaders in the early childhood education and care sector and shape the future of family day care.
To find out more about the FDCA 2021 National Conference including information on accommodation and our keynote speakers, visit www.fdca.com.au/conference.
Preparing for an emergency
Every year, communities across Australia are faced with the devastating effects of disasters. Like all early childhood education and care services, family day care services need to plan and be prepared for potential emergencies and need to consider the unique nature of the service structure in doing so.
The Department of Education, Skills and Employment (DESE) has developed a suite of videos to help you prepare for the disaster season.
The short videos provide practical tips on what to do before, during and after an emergency. The videos also detail your responsibilities and obligations under Commonwealth law.
- What is a local emergency under Family Assistance Law?
- What your emergency management plan should cover?
- Support for services and families during an emergency
- Government payments to help you recover
- Mental health resources
Watch now on the Department of Education, Skills and Employment website.
ACECQA also provides a handy quick reference guide for services that provides assistance in using the NQA IT System during emergency management scenarios.
Click here to access the quick reference guide.
Do you need a National Police Check for 2021?
Did you know that as an FDCA member you're able to access an FDCA National Police Check at an exclusive members-only price of $37.50?
This is the cheapest price on the market in Australia and it's only available to FDCA members!
Our National Police Checks are tailored for the family day care sector, which means you will save time and money. FDCA's National Police Check can also be sent directly to an approved family day care service, meaning you and your service will get the original check results as soon as they become available.
To find out more and get your National Police Check go to https://fdcapolicechecks.com.au.
Do I need a National Police Check?
A service may request that you complete a National Police Check as approved providers have obligations under both the Education and Care Services National Regulations and the Child Care Subsidy Minister's Rules 2017 to ensure the fitness and propriety of all educators registered with the service. As such, services may have a policy that requires educators or other personnel to undertake a National Police Check regularly, for example, annually.
Additionally, you will need to undertake a National Police Check if you transfer to a different family day care service. When an approved provider registers a new family day care educator to a service, the provider must provide a declaration to the Department of Education and Training, within 7 days, that they have sighted the National Police Check (that is no more than 6 months old).
To find out more about who needs a National Police Check and why, click here.
If you have any questions or need assistance please call 1800 658 699 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Children’s education and care sector continues to display adaptability, resilience and quality improvement
ACECQA's fourth NQF Annual Performance Report is now available online.
Key findings and recommendations include:
- Children’s education and care service providers and educators throughout 2019-20, in the face of challenges like COVID-19, have demonstrated the vital role they play in supporting children to continue their early development and education, and in enabling parents and carers to continue to work where possible. As such, sector wide issues such as workforce sustainability, educator wellbeing, provider and service viability, and skilled migration, will also require ongoing monitoring and attention by all stakeholders.
- Almost nine out of ten (88%) services are rated Meeting NQS or above for Quality Area 2 (Children’s health and safety). The most challenging elements of quality continue to relate to health practices and procedures, supervision, and incident and emergency management.
- The rate of serious incidents and confirmed breaches increased in 2019/20. While the rate of serious incidents was slightly higher than in 2018/19, it has remained steady over the last four years.
- Approaching nine out of ten (87%) services are rated Meeting NQS or above in Quality Area 1 (Educational program and practice). The most challenging elements of quality continue to relate to the assessment and planning cycle and critical reflection.
- There is likely to be a significant increase of potentially vulnerable children in Australia as a result of the immediate and continued impact of COVID-19. There’s a growing gap between the quality of services in the most disadvantaged and most advantaged areas. There is also a marked difference in the proportion of high quality services, with services in the most advantaged areas notably more likely to achieve the Exceeding NQS rating.
CCCF grant for services in disadvantaged and vulnerable areas
The Community Child Care Fund (CCCF) Open Competitive grant opportunity supports services in disadvantaged and vulnerable communities.
It gives eligible services extra funding to:
- help them stay open, and
- increase the number of children in care from disadvantaged or vulnerable families and communities.
Applications for the next funding round will open on 11 January 2021 and close 11pm (AEDT) 22 February 2021.
The application form will be available on the Community Grants Hub.
To learn more about the grant opportunity, click here.
Reviewing your QIP and service philosophy
The beginning of the year is a good time to review and revise your Service Philosophy and Quality Improvement Plan (QIP), which must be done at least annually.
ACECQA provides information sheets and a QIP template, which are useful resources to revisit. These can be found at the below links:
COVID-19 restrictions and family day care in NSW
The NSW Education and Care Directorate has promptly responded to FDCA's request for clarification regarding the updated COVID-19 restrictions for Greater Sydney, Central Coast and Wollongong regarding the condition that "the number of visitors allowed in a place of residence is limited to 5 people per day. The total number of visitors includes adults and children."
Any restrictions on the total number of visitors to residences do not apply to family day care residences whilst education and care is being provided. NSW Health has advised that the public health order indicates that a person is not counted as a visitor to a place of residence if they are there for the purposes of childcare [clause 15(4)(b)(ii)].
The Directorate has also clarified that NSW Health have confirmed that children under 12 years old are exempt from any requirements to wear face masks. Children over 12 years old and educators and staff at ECE services are not required to wear face masks whilst education and care is being provided, however, they may choose to do so.
However, it is strongly recommended that visitors to services wear a face mask where practical. For further information about the use of face masks, please visit: https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/face-masks
Services should follow COVID-19 safe practices, and are encouraged to keep electronic records of all visitors, preferably by using the Service NSW app. For more information, please visit: https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/being-covid-safe/check-in
Also, in line with previous advice, ECEC services are considered essential services. As such, all services in areas declared COVID-19 hotspots may continue to provide education and care.
If you have any questions relating to the new COVID-19 restrictions you can contact the Information and Enquires team on 1800 619 113 or by emailing email@example.com.
Child Safe Standards regulatory scheme – feedback sought
The NSW Office of the Children’s Guardian seeks feedback on the Exposure Draft of the Children’s Guardian Amendment (Child Safe Scheme) Bill 2020. The Bill proposes to amend the Children’s Guardian Act 2019.
The Bill seeks to implement the vision of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse to make organisations safer for children. The royal commission recommended that child-related organisations be required to implement Child Safe Standards and be held accountable for their implementation through independent oversight.
Extensive consultations were conducted with government and non-government stakeholders throughout 2019 and 2020 on a regulatory scheme for the Child Safe Standards. The Consultation Report summarises the key components proposed for the scheme based on the Office's consultation.
The Bill largely reflects what stakeholders wanted to see in a Child Safe Scheme.
Find the online survey and other information on NSW Have Your Say.