We are a 'people' industry and our staff are people, and are as important to us as our customers - our children and their parents. We understand that there are high expectations of Childcare teachers, with significant responsibilities placed on them - all for lower than deserved salaries.
The Centre management recognises that if we are prepared to put more into our teaching staff, then they will put more into their work with the children, and the children will benefit.
This creates an environment of happy and supportive parents, which will then support the Centre, and so the cycle continues. We want the highest quality Centre, and we are prepared to start the wheel turning.
The Centre has therefore developed its 'Staff Benefits Program', to provide its staff with the following benefits, in addition to all the 'standard' things that are covered in the Childcare Award.
Above Award salaries.
Uniforms to wear at work.
'Blue Cards' paid by the Centre.
The facility to 'salary sacrifice' and/or salary package your income.
Participation in Centre organised training courses for Professional Development.(More can be found on this under the heading of 'Training & P.D.')
Study support for those staff undergoing additional studies.
Partial or complete subsidy of fees for staff to upgrade their qualifications.
Priority access to child care for all staff.
Pre-tax child care fee deductions.
Employee assistance program.
Participation in Staff team-building events and functions. (More can be found on this under the heading of 'Activities'.)
Participation in our 'recognition of great service' program
Flexibility of holidays.
In addition to the above, our staff also value:
External Cleaners maintain the centre on a daily basis. This allows the teaching staff to spend as much time as possible with the children, doing the things that they have been trained for, and not cleaning rooms.
Substantially more in both quality and quantity than the minimum equipment required by regulations. In addition we have a regular upgrade/replacement program to ensure that staff continue to have the best materials to work with, for the children.
In addition, we have our own resource bank (equipment library) for staff to draw upon, for their programing needs.
A very substantial 'arts & crafts' supply for each room, to also allow staff to program the widest variety of activities for the children.
A substantial staff professional library of reference books, tapes, CD's, and other resources, to provide them with the greatest range of innovative ideas from which they can draw on as part of their programing preparation.
Air conditioned classrooms, to provide the most comfortable working environment, for the staff and the children, in the long hot Queensland summers.
On-site Licencees, who are directly involved with the Centre and are totally committed to the Centre - its staff, its programs and its children.
Our parents expect that their children will be looked after and taught by "qualified" staff. Qualified staff have been given the training to work with, care for, and teach, young children.
All of our staff have their basic childcare qualifications of a Certificate III in Children's Services.
All our staff who work in the capacity of Lead Educators hold their Diploma in Early Childhood Education and Care, or are substantially towards the completion of their Diploma. In addition to this, all Pre-School teachers are Bachelor Degree trained.
However Tertiary training is only half of the necessary requirements to be a good Early Educationalist.
Practical experience is just as important, and we pride ourselves in having a staff who have a good mix of both the educational foundations as reflected in the 'paper' certificate, and who also have built on this foundation a strong structure of practical experience.
This is what our parents want, and this is what our children deserve.
'Permanent' employment means that staff are able to accrue holidays and sick leave. They have the security of employment which enables them to be recognised as having a permanent job, and can thus receive favourable consideration for such things as bank loans, car financing, etc.
'Casual' employment means that staff may be paid an initially slightly larger salary, but receive no holidays or sick days, and usually are not recognised as having the security necessary to apply for loans. They may be sent home with little or no notice and lose their income for the time until they are called back to work. Unfortunately, in the Childcare field, this happens when there are insufficient children during holiday periods, and too often staff are 'replaced' permanently because they are away ill for more than a few days.
All our staff are employed on a 'permanent' basis, working 37.5 hours per week. We also employ 3 'floating' staff who are not assigned to a room but can help out in any position where it is needed, and they are also 'permanent'.We do employ some staff on a reduced hours workload, to meet the needs of Outside School Hours Care and other specific situations, but all of these are also employed on a 'permanent' basis.
The employment of additional floating staff also allows us to provide 'programing time' and RDO's for our staff.
We do not employ staff on a 'casual' basis, unless it is in the capacity of 'relieving' staff. On several occasions, casual staff have started with us in this capacity, and have moved to 'permanent' positions, as positions became available.
During the year, we provide a number of organised staff activities such as our 'Staff Weekend Away' and our 'Awards Nights'.These could be seen as team-building activities or simply a 'thank you' to everyone for the jobs they do with our children. Several times during the year, we have staff nights out to the movies, or whatever may seem like a good idea to our team.
Many of our 'older' staff can say they have competed in the Olympics – in some very unusual events; played pirates with buried treasure on Stradbroke Island; undertaken 'survivor' weekends at the luxury resort at Tangalooma; and even gone on a very unusual 'safari' at Kooralbyn Valley Resort.
Our sole purpose of our staff activities – whatever they may be – is to have fun with our fellow workmates.
We organise a number of Training and Professional Development weekends for our staff throughout the year.Some of these, such as 'Food Handling' and 'Fire Extinguisher Operation' are held as part of our staff monthly meetings.Others such as 'First Aid' and P.D. courses organised by external organisations, are held at some time over a weekend, depending on the length of the particular course.
In the past, we have organised many courses and workshops, covering such topics as 'Behaviour Management', 'Communication', 'Special Needs', 'Music', 'Storytelling', and many more.All of these courses are fully paid for the staff; by the Centre; or at least subsidised by the Centre.
We support and encourage our staff to 'upgrade' their childcare qualifications.
We employ 40 staff, and as with any community of people this size, there is always staff who are travelling overseas, ceasing work to start a family, or re-locating their home to another city because of family matters.
If you would like to discuss the possibility of future employment, and you feel that you have the appropriate levels of qualifications, training and experience, and could offer something 'special' to our children, please contact our Centre Management, and/or send us your resume.We will acknowledge all applications, and would always be happy to consider new staff for our team.
We would suggest that you read the other 'tabs' covering our staffing, if you have not already done so, to find out a little more about us.
In the past, we have even created a position for the right person, until a 'normal' position becomes available.