Queensland Government gives $3m to boost ECEC educator skills
Queensland kindergartens and early childhood services are now able to bid for grants from a $3 million pool which has been established to boost the skills of educators and other staff.
The Plan Your Future Workforce Grants, each worth up to $30,000, are aimed at future proofing the growing early childhood education and care (ECEC) sector.
Education Minister Grace Grace said the COVID-19 pandemic “has highlighted how critical the early childhood sector is to our community, and the national need for more qualified people”.
The grant funding, she continued, will allow services to plan for their future workforce needs, support educators to meet national qualification requirements, and assist with staff retention.
“We know that staff qualifications can lead to higher quality early learning for children to boost their development and wellbeing, this is especially so for the wellbeing of children experiencing developmental vulnerabilities.”
Lady Gowrie Queensland CEO Louise Jackson welcomed the announcement, saying the organisation is “particularly pleased” that many of the grants will be available to support services in regional Queensland.
The grants will be prioritised for eligible kindergarten services without a qualified early childhood teacher (ECT), single or small service providers, and services within economically disadvantaged areas of Queensland.
Funding from the grant can be used to pay for study leave for educators, tutoring expenses, travel and accommodation costs for staff needing to complete subjects or participate in practicum placements, to purchase computers or software, for text books or e-texts, and on professional development on leadership or building staff capacity in pursuit of inclusivity for all children.
Grant applications close Friday 12 March 2021. During the application period the Department will hold information sessions via teleconference on the funding criteria and application process.
For more information, please see here.