G8 parent goes from mum to educator-in-training amid workforce shortage

Amid a workforce shortage crisis where vacancies can take months to fill, what better endorsement of a centre’s service and its team then a parent deciding to go from “mum” to “educator-in-training”.

Jessica Collins, G8 centre Community Kids Mount Gambier’s new trainee said she was so inspired by the educators and teachers at the service that when the opportunity arose to join the team, it was a no-brainer.

“I had thought about making the switch from post office retail assistant to early learning educator, but I didn’t think juggling work, study and being a single mum was viable,” said Ms Collins.

“My son, Oliver, has been attending Community Kids Mount Gambier for 12 months and absolutely adores the team and has grown so much is a short period of time.

“When I saw the service was advertising for a trainee position which supports you to work while you study, it was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up.”

Ms Collins is now two months into her journey and sees a fulfilling future in the early learning sector.

“I feel privileged that I get to support children to grow and explore their worlds every day,” she said.

“I am excited to be able to provide other children and families with the same incredible experiences that my son and I have enjoyed at the service.”

G8’s statistics show employees who complete a VET qualification through the sector-leading G8 Study Pathway Program stay, on average, twice as long as non-study pathways qualified team members.

Community Kids Mount Gambier Centre Manager, Ella McIntyre said the centre has thankfully retained a lot of their longstanding team despite the sector wide workforce issues, however she is focused making sure that continues.

“Particularly in the current workforce shortage environment it has never been more important to invest in developing our own educators so we can continue to enjoy the stability of a strong and talented team into the future,” she said.

“Jessica has been a great addition to our team, and we look forward to welcoming more trainees in the future.”

To learn more about how to apply for a traineeship or position with G8 Education, visit G8’s Careers Website.

Kindy Patch Clarinda named in top 8 per cent of Australian early learning services

One of G8’s early learning centre, Kindy Patch Clarinda, has joined an elite club of Australia’s top eight per cent of early learning services*, after receiving “Exceeding” in all seven quality areas from the Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) in a recent assessment.

“I am so proud of the high-quality education and care my team provides our children and families every day, so it is wonderful for that to be recognised in this way,” said Kindy Patch Clarinda Centre Manager, Pavi De Alwis.

Early child education and care services are assessed and rated by their state and territory regulatory authority against the seven quality areas of the National Quality Standard (NQS), ranging from “Exceeding” down to “Significant Improvement Required.”

Of the 17,000 early learning services operating under the National Quality Framework in Australia, only 1 in 12 have equalled Kindy Patch Clarinda’s result.

Ms De Alwis said it is her dedicated team and child-focussed centre culture that has led to the success.

“Our best practice is how we foster strong relationships with the children in our care and plan and support experiences which are child-led and initiated,” she said.        

“We listen to our children’s voices by running indoor and outdoor play and providing progressive meals which take into consideration and respect children’s needs and wants. 

“This is very important aspect of our service as we always take children’s input when planning their day.”

The centre’s practices have also been influenced by the needs and expectations of its broader centre community.

“To promote collaboration with our families, we created the community panel which allows everyone to share ideas and stay informed about how we are working to improve their children’s learning and development.

“I would like to continue to expand our community involvement by engaging in more social events that promote opportunities for our children, families and teams to learn and connect.”

“You walk into Kindy Patch Clarinda and you get a sense of community and calm thanks to the team’s approach to planning and family engagement,” said Area Manager Sarah Schwab.

“It is wonderful for the team’s hard work and dedication to be recognised in this way and it should fill the local community with confidence that they are receiving the highest quality education and care at our centre.”

If you like to learn more about Kindy Patch Clarinda visit the website, book a personalised tour online or call 1800 517 052.