ECA calls for ongoing support for ECEC sector in wake of funding withdrawal
Early Childhood Australia (ECA) has called for ongoing Government support for young children, early childhood education and care (ECEC) services and families in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, as the sector begins to navigate without the support of JobKeeper payments and the ECEC Relief Package.
While ECA welcomed support for families outlined in the recent announcement by Federal Education Minister Dan Tehan, noting that all ECEC services in locked down areas of Melbourne (and Shire of Mitchell) will be able to waive parent fees for absences related to COVID-19, from Monday 13 July, this measure alone “won’t address all of the challenges currently facing the sector,” a spokesperson said.
ECEC “has been at the forefront of sectors hit hard by the pandemic,” the spokesperson continued, and the return to CCS, as well as the end of JobKeeper and the ECEC Relief Package means uncertainty for many in the sector.
“We understand that the situation for early childhood education and care is rapidly changing,” an ECA representative noted, saying that while the revert to CCS will be welcomed by some, others will find it difficult to operate under these changed measures.
“It’s imperative that the Federal government ensures that early learning and care services remain viable beyond July, even in areas hard-hit by a resurgence in COVID-19 cases. ECA is calling on all governments around Australia to place the interests of young children at the centre of their decision-making during the pandemic,” the statement concluded.
To learn more about the advocacy work of ECA, please visit their website.