New Education and Children’s Services Act live in South Australia from July 1 2020
South Australian early childhood education and care (ECEC) services will soon operate under new legislative measures, following the Education and Children’s Services Act 2019 (the Act), which passed Parliament on 1 August 2019, and which will replace the Education Act 1972 and the Children Service’s Act 1985 effective 1 July 2020.
A representative from the South Australian Government said the Act provides “a contemporary framework for delivering high-quality children’s services and compulsory education in South Australia.”
An underpinning series of regulations that support the Act, the Education and Children’s Services Regulations 2020 were developed based on feedback received from YourSAy’s public consultation and will also commence 1 July 2020.
The Act, the representative said, “modernises the way we deliver children’s services and education in South Australia, strengthening our commitment to focus on the best interest of the child in everything we do.”
A strong focus in both the Act and the regulations is on parent, caregiver and community involvement in educating and developing children and students, while acknowledging the efforts of all teachers and educators.
The Act also streamlines employment arrangements for government school and preschool teachers and leaders, and more closely aligns these arrangements with the Public Sector Act 2009.
Although the Act largely deals with government schools, preschools and children’s services, some elements apply to non-government schools and providers of approved learning programs, such as early learning centres (ELCs) run in non-government school settings.
The Department for Education “strongly recommended” reading the Education and Children’s Services Act 2019 and Education and Children’s Services Regulations 2020 in full to ensure compliance with both the Act and the regulations.
A summary document has also been provided by the Department, which may be accessed here.
New policies, and updates of existing policies, in support of the new legislation, are currently being developed by the Department and its stakeholders. Once completed, new and updated policies will be available on the department’s policy portal.
For more information, please visit the Department for Education website, here.