Reinvestment the key to high quality childcare
Delivering consistently high quality early learning makes a real difference to outcomes for children
and the nation
, but doing so is no small task.
It needs heavy reinvestment of money and resources, and as a large scale not-for-profit organisation we’re able to do just that. We run Goodstart with the business discipline you’d expect from a national organisation, but being not-for-profit means we have no obligation to pay investors or shareholders.
Moreover, it means we’re free to reinvest strategically in the areas that make the biggest impact on outcomes for children – our facilities, people and practices. Doing this not only supports our vision
for Australia’s children, it’s also embedded in our organisational DNA
People sometimes think being not-for-profit means a compromise in quality, but in fact that perception couldn’t be further from the truth and as you’ll see below, our quality scores against the National Quality Standard
are well above industry averages.
When you consider that children can spend up to 60 hours per week in childcare, having a positive impact on the 70,000 young lives in our care each day is a potential game changer not only for children, but the nation.
How we reinvest our surplus
The surplus we achieve from our centres is re-invested into our social purpose. In the last financial year alone, we’ve reinvested:
- $41 million to upgrade 174 of our centres, bringing the total number upgraded to over 400
- $18 million in professional development, training, support and research
- $21 million in our social purpose, which includes better resourcing and training for centres supporting disadvantaged children
- $6.2 million in social inclusion, helping more disadvantaged and vulnerable children to access high quality early learning and care
Making a difference on the ground
We channel our programs and resources into the areas that provide the most benefit for children and families. Some other highlights of our past 12 months include:
- Delivering 27,700 hours of professional development and training to staff
- Embedding in all Goodstart centres our very own Practice Guide, which links the evidence of what works best for children in early learning settings to the practice of our teachers and educators
- Raising the quality of our centres, which saw more than 92% of our centres assessed in 2016/17 rated as meeting the national quality standard and 43% rated as exceeding, ahead of the industry average
- Contributing to research, with five centres in NSW participating in the Pathway to Excellence Action Research Project and 60 centres in Victoria participating of the University of Wollongong Researching Effective Early Learning study
- Increasing the number of centres receiving intensive support in disadvantaged communities from 25 to 30, supported by an expanded team of over 40 child and family practitioners, speech pathologists, occupational therapists and social inclusion coordinators.
- Employing over 1,000 teachers and sponsoring another 120 who are studying to become teachers
- Supporting eight of our educators to work at the Baya Gawiy Buga yani Jandu yani u Early Learning Centre at Fitzroy Crossing in remote Western Australia, as part of our Reconciliation Action Plan
In addition to investment, we’re also actively helping families and government to understand and embrace the importance of early learning through our advocacy program
It’s all part of our vision for Australia’s children to have the best possible start in life.