The latest news, views & reviews for Australia's child care industry July 30, 2013
child care industry news
Welcome this week we report back on the findings of our Mini Poll on wait lists. Meet our child care champion Valnessa Whittington and learn all about promoting safe fun in the winter sun.
The great waiting game
What you said

waitlistsA big thank you to all the early childhood education and care providers who took the time to answer our Mini Poll on wait lists this month, thanks also to

We conducted the research in conjunction with ABC News which is examining child care as an issue in the lead up to this year's Federal Election.

Predictably the research revealed that Australia's inner urban areas, especially in Sydney and Melbourne, have the longest waitlists with spaces for zero-three year olds at a premium.

The research showed that families can expect to wait up to 30 months to secure care in these areas.

View a summary of the research on an interactive map. Click on the Read More button below which will take you to the ABC News article then scroll down to the map.

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Promoting winter fun in the sun

sun safeEarly childhood education and care professionals are well versed in promoting sun safe practices such as no hat no play, sun avoidance in the middle of the day and the use of high protection sun screen. In fact many of these policies have become so entrenched that some services may stick to them year round prompting SunSmart Victoria to send information to service providers on the importance of vitamin D.

Vitamin D is important for the development of healthy bones, muscles and general wellbeing and the best natural source of vitamin D is the sun’s UV. To ensure children in care receive adequate doses of vitamin D, Victorian child care providers are being advised to put the sun hats and sun screen away over the months of May through to August when UV levels are low (below three).

SunSmart Victoria say that people should expose their face, hands, arms or another body part to midday winter sun for two-three hours per week and those with naturally dark skin may need three-six times that amount.

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Child care person in the spotlight
Vanessa Whittington - OSHC Coordinator - Let's Play Centre in Ellenbrook WA

Vanessa WhittingtonChild care professionals share a commitment to improving society by creating dynamic and nurturing care environments for Australia's youngest learners. This month we feature an interview with Vanessa Whittington.

What is your name?
My name is Vanessa Whittington. I used to get called Nessa when I worked with the younger age groups but now I work with school aged children they can actually say my name properly.

Which centre do you work in?
I work at the Let's Play Centre Ellenbrook WA. We are licensed for 65 children (we are not yet full, about half way and growing fast) and currently have two qualified educators and two Cert III educators.

What is your professional background and career experience?
I worked in the retail industry after leaving high school, becoming a store manager at 22 years of age. After 14 years and having my fourth child I decided to look for a traineeship in the child care industry rather than go back to into retail.

I nearly ran in the other direction when I found out how much a trainee earned but I persevered and worked hard to complete my Diploma in Children's Services gaining my own room working with 0-2 year olds. Now I have a fantastic position at the Let's Play Centre in Ellenbrook as the OSHC Coordinator. There's always a lot to do but I love it and I learn something new every day.

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