Sustainability at G8 Education

At G8 Education we believe in the power of the individual to do good – in the workplace, at home and within the communities in which we operate. Helping others is fundamental to our culture and we aim to instil this in our families and our team members.

0ur business exists to deliver on our purpose, creating the foundations for learning for life.

We have a proud history of supporting various initiatives, charities and appeals. We’ve learned that the joy of giving is far greater than receiving, and collectively more than 50,000 children and 10,000 passionate and caring team members across our national network can make a real difference.

We aim to put the needs of families, communities and the planet at the heart of our centres today to build a better tomorrow.

We recognise the important role we play in the lives of the children in our care, the families we support and the community in which we operate. We aim to contribute to a robust, equitable and sustainable future for all stakeholders.

Sustainability Approach

G8 Education’s sustainability approach is focused on creating long term value for our families, team members, the communities in which we operate and our investors in the management of environment, social and governance risks and opportunities.

We have adopted a continuous improvement approach to sustainability, where sustainability performance and reporting transparency increases each year in an effort to align with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The 17 SDGs set a global agenda for sustainable development through 2030 and are a call to action to address the world’s most pressing economic, environmental and social issues.

Our business and approach to sustainability touches on numerous SDGs as outlined below and highlighted in the various reporting topics for each of our four sustainability pillars, which we reported against in our 2021 Sustainability Report. Our sustainability targets aim to support the SDGs and we intend to report in alignment with the SDGs when possible.

Materiality Assessment

In 2020 we began the process of revising our sustainability strategy by engaging Ernst and Young as an independent consultant to conduct a materiality assessment designed to identify and understand the most material areas of focus for long-term value creation for our stakeholders. This materiality assessment has shaped our strategic sustainability initiatives and commitments moving forward.

The material topics identified in the materiality assessment were grouped against four sustainability pillars. The below matrix maps the importance of these material topics to stakeholders against their business impact. Large dots represent short-term priorities whereas smaller dots, while still important, form part of G8 Education’s long term sustainability goals.

By identifying and prioritising the topics most significant to us and applying those learnings to our risk management framework, we can proactively manage material economic, social and environmental risks identified by our stakeholders and make more informed decisions that better reflect their needs and expectations of our business.

Sustainability Pillars

Governance

Governance is the overarching pillar, representing half of our top material topics also reflecting how critical strong governance is to our success. Stakeholders have increasingly high expectations in relation to financial performance, governance issues and risk management, as well as ethical practices and reporting in the current COVID-19 context, and want to ensure that management is kept accountable for improving sustainability performance through transparent disclosures. We must demonstrate ethical practices and decision-making throughout all levels of our organisation in order to succeed.

  • 92%  ‘Meeting’ or ‘Exceeding’ rating for centres assessed under the National Quality Standard (NQS) in 2021
  • Compliance with ASX Corporate Governance Council’s Corporate Governance Principles and Recommendations (4th Edition)
  • Formal enterprise risk management (ERM), including Risk Management Policy and Risk Management Framework
  • Annual Risk Workshops and ERM reviewed at all Audit & Risk Management Committee meetings
  • Mandatory compliance training on child safety and information security
  • Monthly incident report and quarterly compliance reporting to the Board
  • Improvements in Whistleblower Policy
  • Improved reporting and transparency of sustainability performance
  • Continuous improvement approach to sustainability – reporting to align with Sustainability Development Goals
  • Deeper review of G8’s operations and supply chain to ensure modern slavery risk are identified and reduced
  • 95% of centres meeting of exceeding NQS
  • Continued investment in Improvement Programs with transparent reporting to stakeholders demonstrating the associated benefits
  • Recognised advocate for children and the early learning sector

Service Quality

Child health and safety is a key focus as well as curriculum delivery and family experience and engagement. Service Quality is G8 Education’s core business and is directly linked to our families’ satisfaction with our services and centre occupancy driving financial returns.

  • New child safety and protection training programs completed by 92% of the team 
  • 92%  ‘Meeting’ or ‘Exceeding’ rating for centres assessed under the National Quality Standard (NQS) in 2021
  • 86% of network achieving ‘Meeting’ or ‘Exceeding’ under NQS as at 31 December 2021
  • Development and implementation of a range of new child safety training modules
  • Acquisition of Leor to enter the in-home and specialised care segments to broaden service opportunities for families and team
  • Investment in quality improvement programs with a focus on building the capability of educators and teachers to enhance pedagogy and practice
  • Engaging with families and communities through various community support initiatives including:
    • gift packs and other initiatives for teams and families that have been through challenging times during COVID-19
    • Cleaning up Australia
    • Gathering pyjamas for Pyjama day
    • Nappy collections
    • Blood donations
    • Raising money for local charities
  • 95% of network achieving ‘Meeting’ or ‘Exceeding’ under the NQS by end of 2024
  • Net Promoter Score of 65 by end of 2024
  • Finding opportunities to add services into our network so parents can spend more time with their families
  • Finding opportunities to give back to the community through paid volunteer leave and community reinvestment charities
  • Developing and implementing a National Reconciliation Action Plan to close the gap between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and other Australians

Our People

Our People and the culture of our teams are what create and maintain our reputation. As a people-focused business, employee health and safety, talent management, development and retention drive the success of G8 Education. It is critical that we retain and invest in values-driven team members who are committed to the best interest of children under our care.

  • Study Pathways Program enrolments and scholarships in Bachelor degrees and Traineeships increased 20% on prior year (to 1084 active enrolments) and 40% increase on 2019
  • Strong gender diversity on the Board and Executive Leadership Team (see Sustainability Report for more details)
  • LTIFR score of <5 in both 2020 and 2021, against a target of 6
  • 76% of team members said overall “they feel confident that their career goals can be met at G8”
  • From 1 November 2021, our qualified Early Childhood Teachers pay increased above new award rates
  • Our permanent Educators working towards their Early Childhood Teach qualifications received a 12% allowance on ordinary hours of work while they progress their study
  • First steps induction program in place for all new Centre Managers
  • 3 in 4 team members would recommend G8 as a great place to work, with inclusion and safety identified as our biggest strengths by team members
  • Further promote diversity and inclusion amongst team members and within centres
  • Increase team member engagement score to 85% by end of 2024
  • Become an employer of choice in Early Childhood Education

Our Environment

Climate change is one of the defining issues of our time, and escalating natural disasters have highlighted the ongoing risk and importance of responding to climate change in Australia and around the world. We play an important role in educating our children on the impacts of climate change and the importance of reducing our environmental footprint. We are monitoring which potential risks and opportunities are most material to us in the context of our environmental footprint, our environmental stewardship and climate change generally, which will inform our strategic and policy adjustments to best mitigate risk and seize opportunities moving forward.

  • We have identified several initiatives to reduce our environmental impact including:
    • Investing in solar and green energy for our existing centres
    • Integrating sustainable building design principles for all new builds
    • Reducing waste creation across our network
    • Recycling our waste into clean energy.
  • Conducting an audit of energy consumption to improve disclosure on energy usage moving forward
  • Educational programs in place for > 50K children regarding climate change and ways to reduce impacts to the environment
  • Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions measured
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  • Reporting on Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions, along with broader Scope 3 disclosures in CY22.
  • Engagement with key suppliers to jointly sponsor environmental initiatives