The latest news, views & reviews for Australia's child care industry June 18, 2013
child care industry news
Welcome, this week we meet Jan Marxsen Co-ordinator of Outside School Hours Care at John Paul College in Brisbane. Jan's service was recently rated under the NQS as Exceeding the National Quality Standard and this week she shares the tricks of her trade. Plus we look at successfully managing unpaid debt.
Child care person in the spotlight
Jan Marxsen Co-ordinator of Outside School Hours Care at John Paul College in Brisbane QLD

Jan MarxenChild 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 Jan Marxsen

What is your name?

My name is Jan Marxsen and I am 55 years old.

Which centre do you work in? How many staff and children are in the Centre?

I am the Co-ordinator of Outside School Hours Care at John Paul College. John Paul College is one of Queensland's largest and most progressive private, independent, co-educational schools with a reputation for offering K-Year 12 students a contemporary learning experience, supported by comprehensive co-curricular performing arts and sporting programs and a leading Notebook Computer Program. Our campus is located in Daisy Hill, south-east of Brisbane and north of the Gold Coast.

Our outside school hours care program caters for students from Prep-Year 7. Our service is highly important to the parents of the college and in our before school program we care for up to 90 children each morning and in the afternoon session approximately 130 children.

Our vacation care program is extremely popular and we can have up to 110 children book in for any special event day.

I have a team of twelve dedicated educators who work tirelessly and support me to ensure the children who attend our program are well cared for.

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Is your service excellent?

excellent ratingACECQA's 'Excellent' rating is the highest rating an education and care service can achieve.

Providers which are assessed as 'Exceeding the National Quality Standard' can choose to apply for an Excellent rating.

According to ACECQA the purpose of the Excellent rating is to:

  • celebrate excellence in the delivery of education and care
  • engage and involve families and the community in the profession's discussion about quality and what is important in education and care
  • learn from and be inspired by examples of highly accomplished practice, innovation and creativity in education and care
  • promote and reinforce the value of education and care and the people who work in the sector
  • recognise providers and educators who are champions of quality improvement.

To apply for the Excellent rating, providers must complete the application form and be able to demonstrate how their service meets the criteria.

For more information about the Excellent rating and to download an application form click the More Info button below.

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Successfully managing unpaid debt

Unpaid debtThe topic of unpaid debt in the child care sector is enough to provoke the most even tempered provider into a state of frustration and anger. Here at we often hear from providers frustrated by the system which makes it possible for parents to avoid paying fees, centre hop and still receive the CCB and CCR.

In Australia various companies and databases have been established to help child care providers identify parents who regularly skip paying fees and then change centres. These systems require child care providers to enter the names of serial offenders into a database which other providers can use to check up on parents before accepting an enrolment.

The problem with this system is that providers have to pay to access the information and it requires centres which are out of pocket to enter the details of the parents into the database, which may not help them reclaim their money.

It would seem the best way to deal with the problem of debt is to avoid it. An increasing number of centres are operating on a cash/cheque free basis and operate on a direct debit system where the money is taken straight from the bank account of parents. Introducing this as a centre wide policy with a dishonor fee if a transaction fails would make it much harder for parents to avoid paying fees.

Most early child care service providers will seek to avoid the emotionally challenging step of excluding a child from care in the event of non-payment, however when non-payment starts to effect the viability of the business or reach unmanageable levels then providers need to take action.

The following information will hopefully help you develop a debt avoidance action plan for your service:

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Beyond Tomorrow 2013

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