KU Annual Report 2010 - Page 4

The year in review Chairman and CEO’s Report During 2010, KU continued to implement our Strategic Plan “Making the KU Difference” with our major focus on continually improving the quality of our early childhood education and care while at the same time ensuring our services remain affordable for families. and in centres across Australia, through a variety of Our key priority has been the introduction of the government funded programs and services. National Quality Reforms and we have been actively preparing for the implementation of the Early Years As well, KU directly funded approximately $1.7 million Learning Framework and National Quality Standards of important initiatives including: our Affordable which will apply external evaluation to preschools for the Fees Program, to keep fees at our centres in the most first time, as well as to long day care centres. One of our disadvantaged areas, where children perhaps need key concerns is to ensure the smooth implementation of KU most, affordable for most families; the inclusion the new system in all KU centres by supporting our staff of children in our centres through the Early Learning through the Professional Development Program. Inclusion Team; and subsidising the shortfall in SCAN and ISS funding. As part of our commitment to keeping fees KU is already well-advanced in implementing the new affordable, KU reduced fees in 77 of our 93 preschools Standards. We are very proud that we have implemented for the second half of 2010, using one-off funding the 1:4 educator to child ratio for 0-2 year olds in all our received from the NSW Government as part of the long day care centres from the commencement of 2010. COAG commitment to provide access to preschool for all For many years, KU policy has required a university- children in the year before school. This not only gave an qualified early childhood teacher in every centre immediate benefit to many KU families but also enabled regardless of size, and almost 50% of our permanent many other families, for whom cost was a significant educators already have an Associate Diploma barrier to access, to qualification or above, A key issue for the Board and Management is enrol their child in a so in that regard we are KU’s financial sustainability, which will mean we can KU preschool. already meeting or continue to grow, making the KU Difference for more exceeding the new We were delighted children and families requirements. that this led to an immediate and dramatic increase in enrolments in KU also continues to concentrate on our commitment to some of our preschools where affordability is a real issue child-centred, educational and social justice values. We and where we have struggled to fill all of our places. are proud that in 2010, KU delivered over $77 million of NSW preschools are the most expensive in Australia, initiatives to include and support disadvantaged children with affordability being a real barrier to access, so we in early childhood education and care, both within KU “ “ KU’s National Quality Reform journey KU has strongly advocated for and championed the National Quality Reforms. Our long term commitment to quality, our own quality standards, and the planned approach we are taking, see KU lead the way in the implementation of the reforms. Major Reform Requirement Deadline KU’s current position 1:4 ratio for 0-2 year olds By 1/1/12 Already in place from 2010 1:5 ratio for 2-3 year olds By 1/1/16 ACT already at 1:5 NSW currently 1:8 QLD currently at 1:6 VIC transitioning to 1:4 1:11 ratio for 3-5 year olds By 1/1/16 ACT, NSW & QLD already at 1:10 VIC currently 1:12 University qualified Early Childhood teachers By 1/1/14 Already in place: KU’s long term policy 50% Diploma or above (or working towards) By 1/1/14 40% already have Diploma or above (42% of permanent educators) All other staff have Cert III (or working towards) By 1/1/14 38% CCWs have Cert III (45% of permanent educators) - 100% in QLD - 97% in VIC 5-Step National Quality Rating System From 1/1/12 Planning in place for roll-out 4 KU Children’s Services