NZEI Te Riu Roa - New Zealand Educational Institute
NZEI welcomes Government plans for in-home early
20 February 2019
NZEI Te Riu Roa welcomes the Government's plans to require early childhood qualifications for in-home educators.
NZEI President Lynda Stuart said the move was long overdue, as children deserve educators who are learners themselves and a framework that keeps them safe and supports better quality early learning.
"We would like to see targets set as soon as practical for mandatory qualifications and would also argue for greater integration of home-base services with quality centre-based services, to ensure in-home educators are well supported.
"We are very encouraged to hear the the Government plans to use financial levers to incentivise quality, by directing more funding to services with qualified teachers.
"However, implementing these changes within a 'fiscally neutral' environment doesn't help a struggling sector. The entire ECE sector has been severely underfunded for the past decade and this must be addressed if we are to achieve quality early education for every child," she said.
An NZEI survey released last October found that some qualified ECE teachers were paid as little as $16.75 an hour.
"The budget pressure on ECE services is extreme and reflected in the poor pay rates of qualified teachers. If we are to value quality early education for our children, we have to put greater value on the people providing it. This plan around home-based care is a good first step."