Busy Bees Australia welcomes educators as 2019 Global Talent Exchange Program kicks off
Busy Bees Australia has this week welcomed 16 educators from around the world as the fourth edition of the global early childhood education and care (ECEC) provider’s annual Global Talent Exchange Program (TEP) kicks off.
The program, which seeks to leverage the global reach of the Busy Bees Group and create a platform that enables the exchange of knowledge, ideas and best practice across the network, will this year see educators from Busy Bees centres in England, Scotland, Ireland, Malaysia, Singapore and Canada participating in a tour of Australian Busy Bees sites.
Commenting on the program, Busy Bees Australia Chief Executive Officer, Rob Hughes, said “The excitement from both the team here in Australia and from our international participants is overwhelming to experience. The Busy Bees Talent Exchange Program is truly unique and something we are extremely proud to be able to facilitate.”
Nicola Welburn from Tree Tops Acorns Bolton in England said “It’s just an amazing opportunity. It’s a privilege to be chosen to come out of everybody who applied. Getting that opportunity to meet everyone, speaking with each other and hearing everyone’s opinions on things is really, really interesting.”
The three week program will see the educators proceed through a two day induction at the Busy Bees Australia support office in Brisbane, before being transitioned to one of five host centres where they will spend two weeks observing centre practices and gathering information.
Ruth Jack from Bright Path Lawrence Avenue in British Columbia, Canada said she was most excited to learn from, and share knowledge with, others involved in the program.
“We all have different viewpoints, different values depending on the culture we’ve come from, and I’m excited to learn how all that is going to influence the children and the future of our world” she said.
Each host centre team will be tasked with a different project that explores a particular aspect of service delivery with a view to understanding how best practice in Australia may compare to participants home countries, and to create a pool of knowledge that they will take home.
Mr Hughes noted the value of the team projects, saying they form an important part of the TEP, as they give each participant purpose and structure for their visit, as well as “valuable insights to take back to their home territory.”
The project briefs for this year’s program are:
- Mental Health in Our Children – This project recognises the importance of building a mentally healthy future for children and young people, and requires participants to focus on mental health and healthy habits in programs that support children aged three to five years of age. Participants are asked to consider the different approaches to child mental health across territories, and how this may blend into Busy Bees initiatives.
- Exceptional Customer Service – This project focuses on how to define “exceptional customer service” and explores what looks like for families and children. This project requires and assessment of what frameworks may be used to assess this, and how differences across territories reflect local expectations versus what should be a global approach.
- Respectful Relationships with Toddlers – For one to three year olds, forming relationships can be perceived as challenging, due to young children’s lack of, or limited ability to, use non verbal communication. This project objective is to consider what frameworks exist across territories, what cultural or local differences can support or inhibit these and how the “Circle of Security” philosophy may be applied across the group.
- Outdoor Environments – Play-based learning is at the heart of the Busy Bees early learning philosophy. The outdoor environment and outdoor play is one aspect of this approach. This project examines how aspects of the outdoor environment present in Australian centres might be applicable to other territories and what can other territories share with the Australian centres.
- Staff On-boarding and Induction – Staff turnover impacts on centres and is detrimental to the continuity of care for children. The focus of this project is to reflect on the first impressions of Australia as a TEP participant, evaluate the experiences of the teams at the centres visited and consider how improvements to the on-boarding process might alter retention of staff and why.
At the end of the two week centre placements, the TEP participants share their project work findings to the management team in a presentation that will be recorded before being sent globally across the Busy Bees network so other teams in other territories will be able to view the outcomes as well.
For more information about the TEP, including insights from previous participants, please see here.