Kindergarteners should learn coding, amid Tasmania's struggles with digital literacy: expert
ABC News - Linda Hunt - July 25, 2017

Children from kindergarten onwards should be taught coding to help improve digital literacy in Tasmania, which is an even bigger issue for the state than the NBN rollout, an industry spokesman says. Industry expert William Kestin, who is chief executive of TasICT, has appeared at a federal parliamentary...

SA Government proposes new laws to ban unvaccinated children from childcare and preschool centres
The Advertiser - Lauren Novak - July 23, 2017

UNVACCINATED children would be banned from attending childcare, kindergarten or preschool if proposed stricter laws are approved. The State Government has released legislation for public consultation and intends to pass it through Parliament before the end of the year. Parents would need...

Child abuse claims: Rules change will put responsibility on organisations
Daily Telegraph - Linda Silmalis - July 23, 2017

ORGANISATIONS responsible for children would no longer be able to sidestep child abuse claims by shifting blame on to individuals under major changes being considered by the state government. The introduction of "non-delegable" duty of care would apply to religious organisations, out-of-home...

Remember to factor in rule changes when buying commercial property in your SMSF
Financial Review - Duncan Hughes - July 20, 2017

Bryce Mitchelson, managing director of listed childcare centre landlord Arena Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT), says the odds of a downturn in commercial property in Melbourne and Sydney are "well beyond the tipping point". A REIT diversifies risk through investing in several properties in a...

Kay Turner announced as new CEO of SDN Children's Services
SDN Children's Services - Press Release - July 21, 2017

SDN Children's Services has announced Kay Turner as its new CEO, following the retirement of long time CEO Ginie Udy. Kay has been SDN's Deputy Chief Executive since 2015, and has had a long career in early childhood education, early childhood intervention, and family support work...

Introducing use-it-or-lose-it leave for fathers would make life fairer for mothers
ABC News - Nicola Health - July 20, 2017

It is still the prevailing view in Australia that child care is a woman's responsibility. We have the baby, take maternity leave, and if we go back to work it is usually part time. When a man becomes a father, his working life goes on unchanged. These gender roles feel entrenched, but a simple...

When should your child start school? Study finds parents struggle with answer
ABC News - Alison Branley - July 20, 2017

A growing number of parents are choosing to delay when their child starts school but the decision is also causing them stress and anxiety, a major Queensland study has found. Psychologist Dr Amanda Mergler from the School of Early Childhood at Queensland University of Technology studied 224,000...

It All Adds Up podcast: Are kids a luxury or a social necessity?
Sydney Morning Herald - Matt Wade & Jessica Irvine - July 20, 2017

The federal government will spend more than $43 billion subsidising childcare over the next four years. But Martin explains why some economists – including him – question whether that huge expenditure is really justified. "The traditional argument is that society needs children and therefore these...

Childcare sector joins campaign to stop the lowering of the school starting age
The Mercury - Helen Kempton - July 19, 2017

A HIGHLY visual campaign has been launched in Tasmania as the childcare sector tries to stop legislation passing to lower the school starting age. The legislation, to reduce the compulsory school starting age by six months meaning children could start kindergarten at 3.5 years, is due to go to the...

Early childhood education with a difference teaches toddlers how to play with fire
Sydney Morning Herald - Julie Power - July 19, 2017

Sixty children aged from six months to five were taught at a Newcastle childcare centre how to play with fire, powertools and knives – everything most modern parents avoid. Far from resulting in burnt fingers or broken bones, the researchers found exposing toddlers to "risky play" such as access to open...

Philanthropy Gets Behind Connecting Aboriginal Children With Extended Families
Probono Australia - Rachel McFadden - July 19, 2017

Leading Victorian childcare agencies have secured philanthropic support to complete a pilot program designed to connect Aboriginal children in out-of-home care with siblings and extended families. The family and child care agencies said there was an urgent need for a more systematic approach to...

Prep students pushed 'too hard, too fast' says former Queensland primary school teacher
ABC News - Jessica Hinchliffe - July 18, 2017

A former primary school teacher of 30 years believes prep students are being "set up to fail". Kathy Margolis resigned from teaching 18 months ago after experiencing and disagreeing with changes to the education system. She now heads the Protecting Childhood group, whose members believe...

Children's literacy study links hearing words to reading ability for first time, researchers say
ABC News - Alison Branley - July 18, 2017

Researchers from the Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders have for the first time demonstrated the link between hearing words and being able to read them. Using special eye-tracking technology, neuropsychologist Signy Wegener has established that when children hear...

Prepping for Prep: Should children play or study to get set for Prep Year?
Brisbane Times - Tony Moore - July 17, 2017

Parents should read more to their children at home and let them learn by playing, rather than enrolling them in businesses providing "prep for Prep Year", two pre-school lobby groups say. However, a private agency that has provided classes for young pre-Prep children in Queensland for four years...

Global survey shows Australia rates poorly for funding early education
The Australian - Olivia Caisley - July 17, 2017

The number of Australian children enrolled in early childhood education is far below the global average, prompting calls for increased funding to avert a possible hit to the economy in future. An OECD report places Australia 30th of 35 countries in spending on childhood care as a percentage of gross...