Cloncurry struggling for ECT despite a year of advertising and powerful opportunities
The Sector > Jobs News > Cloncurry struggling for ECT despite a year of advertising and powerful opportunities

Cloncurry struggling for ECT despite a year of advertising and powerful opportunities

by Freya Lucas

January 02, 2023

Cloncurry, a town of 3,600 in outback Queensland, took an unusual step over the Christmas period, sharing a letter to Santa wth the Australian media as a means of demonstrating the challenges the town has faced in securing an early childhood teacher (ECT) for its Curry Kids Early Learning Centre. 


The letter reads: 


Dear Santa,


We are a town of 3,600 amazing people in Outback Queensland, home of stunning rugged landscapes, red ranges, spinifex for miles and sunsets that are the envy of the world. The Royal Flying Doctor Service started right here! We are a booming outback community, and we are desperate for an Early Childhood Teacher. In fact, we need a few. There’s almost 100 kids ready to welcome them with the most fantastic outback handshake imaginable. Can you help?


From, the people of Cloncurry


The town has a  multi-million dollar new Early Learning Centre in development, and has spent 12 months advertising for an ECT, with Cloncurry Shire Mayor Greg Campbell urging graduates and staff in the early childhood education and care (ECEC) sector to look past the Great Dividing Range, way past it, to the Outback, and to a teaching experience unlike any other.


The Council recently announced it has been awarded $4,393,200 in grant funding from the State Government towards a new ECEC facility, meaning additional teachers and early learning staff will be required.


“Cloncurry is a fast-growing, dynamic community that attracts many young families and professionals. We need to be able to support our local families and new families by providing access to fantastic childcare places. To do this we need staff,” Mr Campbell said. 


“There will always be a strong demand for childcare in the Shire; the new facility has the potential to alleviate the strain of childcare on local families and businesses. A new facility that has the potential to double the capacity of the service will have a positive impact on the local economy,” he said.


On offer, for prospective ECTs, is a package which includes a salary of $105,000 + superannuation, accommodation, five weeks leave annually, one RDO each month, and relocation expenses of $2,000 at the start of the contract and $2,000 at end of the contract. The initial contract is for 12 months, with extension possibilities.


“Childcare is a key obstacle for parents looking to return to work. If the Shire can offer childcare services to more families, more parents will be afforded the opportunity to return to the workforce and it will remove a barrier for businesses trying to attract new families to the area,” the Mayor concluded. 

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