ECEC stars recognised in NEiTA Awards for going above and beyond in pandemic year

ECEC stars recognised in NEiTA Awards for going above and beyond in pandemic year

by Freya Lucas

December 13, 2021

Early childhood education and care (ECEC) professionals have been recognised for their outstanding contributions to children and young people’s education and welfare in a year of pandemic in the Futurity-sponsored National Excellence in Teaching Awards (NEiTA)  presentation held last week.


Award recipients from across Australia and New Zealand were rewarded with a trophy, a certificate of merit and a professional development grant of $5,000 or $10,000. This year, the Awards introduced some new ECEC specific categories, namely: 


  • Seed Award: presented in recognition of the efforts of preschool teachers and early childhood educators who lay the foundations for lifelong practice and enjoyment of learning.
  • NEiTA Seed Award for Early Childhood Team Excellence: presented in recognition of the team’s outstanding collective contribution to student education and welfare.


In the ECEC space the teaching team from Toukley Preschool on the Central Coast of New South Wales were awarded the NEiTA Seed Award for Early Childhood Team Excellence, while Amanda Ford from KU ANSTO Children’s Centre, in the NSW suburb of Lucas Heights was recognised with s Seed Award. 


Chandra Littlewood from Moriah Kindergarten in Te Aro, New Zealand, also received a Seed Award, in the NEiTA Early Careers Teaching category. 


NEiTA chairman Allen Blewitt said each of this year’s winners have demonstrated that while education changes lives, it is teachers that can transform students’ futures.


“Lockdowns and closures created risks of isolation and loss of motivation for many students. Each of our worthy recipients demonstrated how great teaching can help students thrive in varied and innovative ways,” he said.


The NEiTA Awards began in 1994 in Australia and in 1996 in New Zealand. Since inception, more than 42,000 teachers have been nominated by the community in the two countries. More than 1,075 teachers have received over $1,200,000 in professional development grants and prizes.


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