ECEC service seeks WA grant based on AEDC data
The Sector > Quality > In The Field > ECEC service seeks WA grant based on AEDC data

ECEC service seeks WA grant based on AEDC data

by Freya Lucas

April 09, 2024

The Carey Park Child and Parent Centre is seeking a Western Australian government grant of up to $100,000, to address findings from the Australian Early Development Census (AEDC) which showed that children in the region it serves are behind in all five developmental domains.


AEDC is conducted every three years, and gives information about how children are performing in five domains – physical, social, emotional, language and communication – on entry to school. 


The next round of AEDC surveying will take place shortly, placing AEDC once again into the front of mind for educators and other professionals. 




Carey Park offers a free playgroup service to parents and children in the small WA community of Bunbury.


Coordinator Tricia Ward said the results from the last AEDC were concerning, and that she worries about the development of children continuing to worsen without intervention and support. 


“Essentially in all of our domains we were well above the state and national average in every single one of them for vulnerability,” she shared with the ABC.


“What the early years committee would like to see is Bunbury come in line with the rest of the state. That would be us making huge gains.”


Grant support


Mrs Ward recently applied for a state government grant of up to $100,000, which is designed to help regions improve their AEDC figures.


The Shires of Collie and Harvey have also applied for the funding.


If Carey Park is approved for the grant Mrs Ward and her team intend to use the funds to employ a specialist to help boost key areas of development.


“An early years specialist that can develop a really in-depth plan for the City of Bunbury, so that we can improve the current data and the outcomes for our families,” she said.


“It wouldn’t actually be so much focus necessarily on one thing in particular, but actually more around the messaging in early childhood development, the type of early interventions and supports that are available, and also just the little things that actually make a difference.”


Mrs Ward expects the outcome of the grant to be announced this week, ahead of the release of the 2024 AEDC survey figures towards the end of the year. 


In the event that the grant application is approved, the evidence of the impact of employing a specialist would most likely be reflected in the 2027 AEDC data release. 


To read the original coverage of this story please see here.

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