Fraser Foundation scholarships aim to combat ECEC workforce shortage crisis
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Fraser Foundation scholarships aim to combat ECEC workforce shortage crisis

by Freya Lucas

June 28, 2022

Not-for-profit organisation The Fraser Foundation is working to solve the early childhood staffing crisis by funding the education of more students who wish to enter the sector.

 

Created by Little Scholars School of Early Learning Founder Jae Fraser, the Foundation is offering support to students from across the country who display a passion for early childhood education, not just those achieving outstanding academic results.

 

While a number of early childhood education and care (ECEC) providers offer scholarships and incentives to those working within their organisation, Mr Fraser’s offering is unique in that it is available to all educators or prospective students, regardless of who they are working for. 

 

“For me, this isn’t about simply looking after my own business; it’s about leaving a legacy that benefits the early childhood education sector holistically,” he explained. 

 

“I want to do my part to ensure that we have a strong, adequate and enthusiastic workforce of early educators across the entire country for years to come.” 

 

Mr Fraser has put forward $2 million of his own money over the next five years to support tertiary students, including those who are ineligible for government support to study in ECEC, as a way of respecting his own story, which saw him “go the long way around” to achieve his dream of becoming an early childhood teacher, working to support himself while studying part-time.

 

“Many people in the sector and the government are expressing concerns about Australia-wide staff shortages across the early education and care sector,” he said. 

 

“I wanted to act and create a solution, so I’m giving back by building the careers of those who are passionate about early childhood education. It’s up to us to make sure that we have highly-motivated and well-educated teachers who can offer all Australian children a successful start in life.”

 

While there are a number of Government initiatives to support students in regional and remote communities and some disadvantaged learners, there are many disadvantaged early education students that fall through the cracks, Mr Fraser continued. 

 

“Unfortunately, financial hardship, remote or rural location, medical conditions and disabilities are some of the barriers that prevent aspiring educators from chasing their dream of a career in early childhood education. Our grants and scholarships will provide successful applicants with access to, and support with, tertiary studies, and research in the field of early childhood education,” he added.

 

The Fraser Foundation is working with Swinburne University to provide early education scholarships to the September 2022 student intake. For further information, including applicant criteria and how to apply for a scholarship, visit thefraserfoundation.com.au

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