Page 1369 - Week 05 - Tuesday, 9 April 2013

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year 12 studies and obtaining year 12 certificates. The Education and Training Directorate is developing a more rigorous approach to data capture and reporting and will ensure that this error does not occur in the future.


Ms Burch presented the following paper, which was circulated to members when the Assembly was not sitting:

Annual Reports (Government Agencies) Act, pursuant to section 13—Annual Report 2012—Canberra Institute of Technology, dated 22 March 2013.

Education and child care—investment

Discussion of matter of public importance

MR ASSISTANT SPEAKER (Mr Gentleman): The Speaker has received letters from Ms Berry, Dr Bourke, Mr Coe, Mr Doszpot, Mr Gentleman, Mr Hanson, Ms Porter, Mr Seselja, Mr Smyth and Mr Wall proposing that matters of public importance be submitted to the Assembly. In accordance with standing order 79, the Speaker has determined that the matter proposed by Dr Bourke be submitted to the Assembly, namely:

The importance of investment in ACT early education and childcare.

DR BOURKE: (Ginninderra) (3.45): The ACT government is committed to high quality, affordable education and care for children, because we recognise just how important it is to the families of the ACT that they can access quality education and care services for their children.

Over the last few years the national quality agenda reforms have seen the implementation of a national quality framework, which has set out a new national standard for education and care services. A key component of the national quality framework is well-trained, professional staff. We know that those people who work in early childhood care and education are hardworking and dedicated, and we know that they can make a great difference to the quality of a child’s care and learning. A professionally paid workforce is critical to implementing the highly acclaimed national quality reforms and to meeting children’s developmental needs. We know that the education and care sector has particular difficulties in recruiting and retaining skilled educators. This is the message that educators have been telling the government and the minister through the Children’s Services Roundtable and the ACT Children’s Services Forum.

I would like to commend the minister for the collaborative approach to working with the sector to identify and solve the issues it faces. I know that the sector greatly appreciates the effort that she, and indeed the government as a whole, has been putting into this sector.

We know workforce capacity is an ongoing challenge for both government and the sector. We know these quality reforms are important for our children. This

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