Reporting of suspected child abuse by childcare centre workers not mandatory in Queensland
Courier Mail - Kelmeny Fraser - March 12, 2014

REPORTING by childcare centre workers of suspected child abuse will not be made mandatory in Queensland, with the Newman Government instead opting for stronger reporting guidelines. A petition to the State Government by the grandparents of murdered north Queensland toddler...

Sterling IPO delayed
The Australian - Amanda Saunders - March 12, 2014

In a move likely to send jitters through the IPO market, ASX hopeful Sterling Early Education is delaying its $200 million bookbuild as it runs further due diligence on some of its childcare centre acquisitions. Macquarie Group's bookbuild for the childcare centre roll-up was set down for...

App-tapping tots need cyber bully lessons
The Australian - Patricia Karvelas - March 12, 2014

THE growing popularity of apps, tablets, smartphones and computers among toddlers has triggered a call for them to be taught about the dangers of cyber bullying in childcare. In a submission to a federal government inquiry, Early Childhood Australia has called for education on online safety to...

Australian Children's Education and Care Quality Authority asked to explain backlog
The Australian - Patricia Karvelas - March 11, 2014

ASSISTANT Education Minister Sussan Ley has ordered the national childcare regulator responsible for assessing all centres to urgently address its huge backlog in a strongly worded letter reprimanding the authority. The Australian has learned the minister has issued the Australian...

Abbott's paid parental leave will do little to bring women to the workforce
The Guardian - Greg Jericho - March 10, 2014

A review of research and data suggests Tony Abbott's proposed paid parental leave (PPL) scheme will probably fail to achieve any significant lift in women's participation in the workforce. More worrying is that spending on childcare, which is much more likely to achieve this aim, is to be...

Why the posh London set all want an Aussie nanny
The Australian - Damian Whitworth - March 10, 2014

THE immigration debate has taken one of its stranger turns with calls for David Cameron to explain why he employed an Australian nanny rather than a British one. Talk to weary veterans of the childcare market, however, and they would wonder why he hadn't done it sooner. An informal...

Limited childcare a major productivity issue for Australia
The Age - Georgia Wilkins and Colin Kruger - March 9, 2014

According to think tank The Australia Institute, the number of households reporting difficulties with the cost of childcare for a child under five stands at more than three out of 10. Then there is the problem of what it dubs the "uneven availability of childcare places", that sees acute shortages...

Edward Melhuish suggests Australia should make preschool free
Sydney Morning Herald - Rachel Browne - March 9, 2014

Australia needs to introduce free preschool places for all children if it is to compete economically with other developed countries, according to a leading international expert in early childhood education. Research by Edward Melhuish from Oxford University has also found that a quality...

ABC collapse serves as learning experience for childcare newbies
The Age - Colin Kruger - March 8, 2014

"This is a business subsidised by government - how can it be unprofitable?" wailed ABC Learning's former chairwoman, Sallyanne Atkinson soon after the collapse. Ms Atkinson would be pleased to know that a new raft of for-profit childcare operators are trying to prove that there is money to...

My School should be scrapped, says Piccoli
Sydney Morning Herald - Alexandra Smith - March 7, 2014

NSW Education Minister Adrian Piccoli wants the controversial My School website scrapped, arguing it is a waste of money that could be better spent on improving teacher quality. Mr Piccoli said the publishing of NAPLAN results on My School was directly responsible for putting students under...

Childcare operators being enticed away from outer growth area
The Age - Georgia Wilkins and Colin Kruger - March 7, 2014

The head of Australia's biggest childcare operator, not-for-profit group Goodstart Early Learning, says the lure of higher returns is driving private operators to set up shop in wealthy, inner-city suburbs, rather than burgeoning outer growth areas. Goodstart chief executive Julia Davison said...

Hockey warns on childcare
Financial Review - Phillip Coorey - March 7, 2014

The federal government has warned of a looming blowout in the cost of childcare subsidies but will spare the rebate from the budget axe, at least until the next federal election. Treasurer Joe Hockey revealed on Thursday that the cost of childcare subsidies, forecast to cost the budget $22 billion...

Sterling talks down competition for centres
Financial Review - Sarah Thompson, Anthony Macdonald and Gretchen Friemann - March 7, 2014

If management from initial public offering-hopeful Sterling Early Education is reading this: it's Friday and you're in Sydney. After a fortnight on the road with stops in Sydney, Hong Kong, New Zealand and Melbourne, Sterling's travelling troupe and advisers Macquarie Capital are back in front of...

Funding in doubt for childcare training
The Australian - Patricia Karvelas - March 6, 2014

THE future of at least one taxpayer-funded program to give childcare workers formal qualifications is in doubt, with no guarantee funding will be extended when it runs out at the end of the year. This is despite the fact that hundreds of childcare centres have failed to hire qualified teachers. More...

Not sure she's a feminist: Minister for Women
Financial Review - Joanna Mather - March 6, 2014

For women with children, the government's review of child care would ensure women with children have the same opportunities and advantages as women without children, she said. "I think flexibility is the key to participation by women in the workforce and flexibility ultimately benefits...