ELAA e-News 22 April 2014

Welcome to Term 2.  ELAA’s e-News is packed with information about our upcoming Conference and other training and professional development programs on offer across the early childhood sector.

Term 2 is usually a time for consolidation – children are more settled, parents and families are more familiar with educators and services – and here at ELAA we are preparing for State and Commonwealth Budgets in May and beginning the work of helping members plan for 2015.

But next year might look radically different.  The Abbott Government still refuses to say whether it will – or will not - continue to fund the National Partnership on Early Childhood Education, the agreement with the States and Territories that enables services to deliver 15 hours of preschool / kindergarten for children in the year before school.

If this funding is withdrawn, it is unlikely that State Governments will bridge the gap. In Victoria for example, that would mean a return to 10 hours of preschool / kindergarten.

In this e-News, we are asking all our members to respond to a short survey asking for your reflections on the implementation of 15 hours. What do you think the benefits for children have been of increased exposure to quality early learning?  What have you invested in time and dollars to deliver 15 hours?  And what would be the impact on your service of a return to 10 hours?

Over the next seven days, please take 5 minutes to complete this survey.  Click on the link here: 15 Hours survey

Your responses to this survey will directly inform the next steps in our efforts to inform the wider community about what the Abbott Government is threatening - and to advocate strongly for the best educational outcomes for our children.

Shane Lucas, Chief Executive Officer ELAA

Early bird registration for the 2014 Early Childhood Education Conference Together we grow- preparing children for life will close 27 April
The 2014 conference will be held on 30 and 31 May, 2014 at Caulfield Racecourse, Melbourne. It promises
to inspire, engage and bring together the early childhood sector that collectively provides quality early childhood education, with a special emphasis on preparing children for life.

High calibre speakers from Australia and overseas will share their views and expertise with our audience – everyone involved in early childhood education from birth to the early years of school.

To see the full program, to register and to take advantage of the Early Bird discount click here.

ELAA's Preschool Matters magazine is now available to read online
ELAA’s popular quarterly magazine Preschool Matters is now available to read online! Each term Preschool Matters covers issues of importance to the early learning sector in Australia, with details on upcoming events, resources, case studies and stories of interest to both our members and the wider community. Members will still receive their copy of the magazine each term, but now everyone can read Preschool Matters online, including on their iPad. See the link here to download and read the Term 1 edition.
Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) strategic review of early childhood training
The Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) is currently conducting a review of early childhood education and care training. The review includes research and audits of randomly selected training providers to address concerns of ‘slipping standards’ in early childhood training. Early Childhood Australia (ECA) is one of the organisations represented on the management committee overseeing the review and have advised the review is accepting formal complaints about registered training organisations (RTOs) via the ASQA website here.
Nominations are now open for the 2014 DEECD Early Years Awards
The Early Years Awards celebrate innovative early childhood practices that contribute to better outcomes for Victorian children. The awards are held as part of Children’s Week celebrations and are sponsored by the Victorian Government’s Best Start program. Nominations must be received by Friday 23 May. For more information see the website here.
'Reflect Respect Relate' training presented by DEECD and Gowrie Vixctoria
DEECD and Gowrie Victoria are offering a two-day professional learning program for early childhood professionals in the Reflect, Respect, Relate Observation scales. The program is linked to the Victorian Early Years Learning and Development Framework (VEYLDF) and uses the latest research and evidence in assessment practices and pedagogy. Two participants from each service are eligible to attend and total program cost is $66 per person. A range of rural and metro locations are available. For more information and details on how to apply see the flyer here.
Early Childhood Intervention Professional Development opportunities
ECI professionals working for a DEECD funded service are eligible to apply for one of two free places in the Family Partnerships Foundations course. The course is delivered by the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute and is based on a reciprocal “helping process” model between ECI practitioners and families. Find out more on the ECIA Vic website here.
Understanding Educational Leadership:  innovation in teaching and learning
Understanding Educational Leadership is a new seminar presented by ELAA and leading early childhood practitioner Catharine Hydon. This one-day seminar explores what it means to be an educational leader, and how to be a champion of inventive and responsive pedagogy that will inspire children and adults alike. The session runs Monday 19 May at ‘Fredricks’ Essendon. For more information and to book see the ELAA training calendar on our website here.
Re-imagining Documentation: practical solutions with Catharine Hydon
Re-imagining Documentation is a new two-part series that will offer educators an opportunity to re-think the role of documentation in their planning cycle. Let Catharine assist you in finding ways to save time whilst effectively tracking children’s learning, using the latest pedagogical research. The two sessions are held on Friday 2 May and Friday 13 June. To book your place, register on the ELAA website by clicking here.

The annual Caring for Kids raffle is on again
Take the hard work out of fundraising and participate in the 2014 Caring for Kids raffle. Over the past 14 years, the Caring for Kids raffle has raised over $2,000,000 in total for the early childhood sector, and was inducted into the Fundraising Institute Hall of Fame in 2007. Don't miss this excellent opportunity to raise funds for your service! The first prize this year is a Myer shopping spree valued at $10,000. Services earn $1 for every $2 ticket sold. Download the raffle order form here and order your tickets now!

Attention parents of young children! A behaviour guidance workshop for the early years
ELAA is running a workshop especially for parents of young children on managing challenging child behaviour. Teacher and Educator Jo Lange will present this special session covering practical tips to deal with a range of common behaviours by using the philosophy and language of positive discipline. The session is on Tues 3 June from 7pm-9pm, and there are limited places so book online now to secure your place.
'What counts as quality in education' - Australian College of Educators National Conference
The Australian College of Educators National Conference this year focuses on issues around quality in education. Educators will come together on 11 and 12 Sepetember in Adelaide to hear from some of Australia's leading education practitioners and engage with the latest research in the field. Early bird registrations are open until April 30. For more information on the conference and for booking details, see the website here.
Diane Chandler Inaugural Memorial Award established by ECIA Victoria
ECIA Vic and the Foundation for Graduates in Early Childhood Studies (Warrawong Foundation) present a $1500 award for educators in recognition of Diane Chandler’s strong commitment to early childhood education. The award provides financial support for educators to undertake professional development of their choosing. Applications close 20 May, and information and application forms are available on the ECA Vic website here.
ELAA on Twitter
Ere you on Twitter? Follow @ELAAAustralia and our CEO @ShaneLucasELAA for the latest news and information from the early childhood sector.



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