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Budget creates two tier early childhood education system

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: NZCA Media Release - Budget creates two tier early childhood education system
Date: Thu, 19 May 2011 18:04:36 +1200
From: Simon Horrocks

To:

MEDIA RELEASE

19 May 2011

Budget creates two tier early childhood education system

The creation of a two-tiered ECE funding system in yesterday's budget provides for kindergarten salary increases, while effectively freezing the teacher salaries for the majority of the sector. This will mean a return to the days when education and care was the poor relation of the ECE sector with services unable to afford to pay their teachers adequately says NZCA Chief Executive Nancy Bell.

"A 1.1% increase to education and care services is unfair alongside the increases for schools at 2.9% and kindergartens at 2.1%. Services will be forced to reduce their staffing costs or increase fees at a time when many families will also be impacted by the changes to Working for Families. This is a very difficult situation for education and care services which provide ECE for around 104,000 children."

"Inflation is increasing the cost of living for everyone. The rates increases will only partly meet this cost. Education and care services and their teachers are not immune to rising costs. The increased cost of Kiwisaver for employers will also impact on a centre's bottom line."

"Education and care services must meet the same regulatory standard of education as kindergartens, with the same overheads and the same teacher qualification requirements. Treating education and care services differently creates a two tier system that will lead to recruitment and retention issues."

"We are pleased to see the increase for kindergartens, but we would like to have seen this applied to all education and care services that do the same job."

ENDS


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