Griffith Preschool Kindergarten and Griffith East Preschool are excited to head to Sydney in April to further their professional development and bring knowledge and skills back to their workplace.
The two kindergartens applied for NSW Government Professional Development Grants for 2017-18, and were successful in receiving the funding.
Both schools will use the grants to attend the Early Years Conference and Expo in Sydney in April, the chance to gain valuable professional and personal experience and training.
Griffith Preschool Kindergarten Director Heather Gowing said being a not-for-profit organisation, opportunities like attending this Expo can be financially difficult, but this funding enables a large cohort of staff to attend.
“The event will be great opportunity on both personal and professional levels, when we get back we will share all of what everyone has learnt and their new perspectives, seeing how we can implement everything we’ve learnt about,” Ms Gowing said.
The expo has many different learning sessions on a wide variety of topics such as self care, music and compliance and national quality standards with much more.
“Everything we bring back will all filter back in through our services to help families and children,” Ms Gowing said.
Griffith East Preschool Director Suzy Tucker said attending the expo gives the staff the chance to attend Professional Development services seldom available to rural areas such as Griffith.
“The funding gives us the opportunity to send four of our staff, enabling everyone to go and bring experience and knowledge back to help us move forward,” Ms Tucker said.
Member for Murray Austin Evans said educational investment comes with a high return in early childhood education, preparing children for school, through the development of their social, emotional and cognitive skills which benefits them in their later school years and beyond.
“It’s vital that early childhood educators can develop their professional skills, and that’s exactly what these grants are for. They’re also structured to ensure the investment goes where it’s needed most, maximising the benefit for children and local communities,” said Mr Evans.
“I congratulate the local services that have applied successfully because their increased workforce capacity will have long term benefits in their communities.”
Children in 143 community preschools across NSW, most in remote and regional areas, will benefit from the distribution of funds through the scheme.
These Griffith preschools are two of seven community preschool services in the Murray electorate to be successful for the new professional development opportunities for early childhood educators.
Community preschools were invited to apply for the one-off grants, with priority given to rural and remote services, services with a high proportion of enrollments of children from disadvantaged backgrounds, and those offering opportunities contributing towards teacher accreditation and peer-to-peer learning exchange.