Category Archives: Opinion pieces

Needs to know

Where do ‘children’s needs’ fit into current thinking about planning and assessment for young children? In a conversation with a colleague recently, the discussion focused on children’s needs and how they fit into the current perspective of early childhood education, viewing children as capable and having rights. For my colleague, the concern was that ‘children’s […]

Can inclusive education do more harm than good?

Recently, a teacher expressed his misgivings about the “inclusion at all costs” ideology of modern education. Despite being well supported by his school and hugely in favour of inclusive practice, he outlined his difficulties in managing a young fellow with Down Syndrome whose behaviour in the classroom was extremely difficult, and increasingly dangerous. This resulted […]

Celtic Country

A lesson on seeing something through the eyes of another. I had travelled past the Celtic Country sign many times as I returned from TAFE residential in Armidale. I had looked at the sign with interest; it is spectacular as it stands proudly on massive stone pillars on the rise of a hill as you enter […]

Bringing mindfulness to life at school

‘Mindfulness’ as a concept and a practice has rapidly entered the zeitgeist, helping to define the spirit and ideas of our times, including in education. Not much more than a decade ago a Google search for mindfulness and education would show the Garrison Institute Initiative for Contemplative Teaching and Learning at the top of the […]

Separating care and education – again

Child care features prominently in the news currently. That’s good? Not really. The problem is that the focus is only on the prohibitive cost to families and insufficient supply. There needs to be more child care, and it needs to be cheaper – end of story. The term education and care services began replacing preschool […]

Controlled Crying?

In this second part of a two-part blog series on the controversial topic of controlled crying, PAM LINKE examines the young child’s attachment and wellbeing. The first blog, written by Dr Anna Price and originally published on The Conversation more than three years ago, examined research into controlled crying, parent sleep and post natal depression. Since that time, ECA […]

Future-proof Australia against welfare dependency and inequality

We should all care about the findings of the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Childcare and Early Childhood Learning, recently delivered to the Federal Government, because it affects our future prosperity as a nation. This is a once in a generation opportunity to future-proof Australia against entrenched welfare dependency, inequality and lack of opportunity amongst a […]

Everyone can benefit from Paid Parental Leave changes

The opposition to the Paid Parental Leave scheme has been unhelpfully vitriolic at times but the Government’s decision to redirect funds from Paid Parental Leave (PPL) into early childhood education and care is the right one. As an advocate for children, I support full wage replacement Paid Parental Leave –it would make it much easier […]

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year?

It’s hard to believe that Christmas has almost rolled around once again. All around the country early childhood services will be madly scrambling to finish portfolios and be dusting off the boxes of Christmas decorations that were unceremoniously shoved in the back of the shed in mid-January. It’s also the time of the year when […]

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