Tackling our challenges together

As we enter the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic, members in the early childhood education sector continue to show resilience, determination, professionalism and go above and beyond to provide quality education and care for children in their communities.

As essential frontline workers, members have faced a range of unprecedented challenges arising from the pandemic, but remain collectively determined to tackle those head on.

If there is one major takeaway from the last two years, it is that job insecurity is the biggest threat to the entire sector – leading to staff shortages and a looming workforce crisis (Crisis as workforce shortages bite).

Getting more teachers to join the union is one way to tackle this. Please make use of the poster (How the IEU makes a difference for early childhood education) to promote the IEU at your workplace. Send us a photo of it on your noticeboard: bedrock@ieu.asn.au.

With a federal election approaching, secure jobs for Australians, particularly in our sector, must be a top priority for governments (Secure jobs worth fighting for).

In this edition of Bedrock, we learn about the positive impact of art on the development of children (Art & Wonder) and explore how nature play can foster a lifelong love of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

Our journalists examine why gender norms are still persistent in young children around the world (Gender stereotypes still influencing five-year-olds) and speak to experts about why consent should be taught to children from a very early age (Teaching consent in early childhood).

We review two wonderful new children’s picture books with a social justice focus (Books for budding unionists) and members can enter the draw to win a giveaway copy (Giveaways).

Our union continues to advocate for improvements to wages and working conditions for members in the early childhood education sector and provide advice, representation and support throughout the pandemic and your career journey.

Terry Burke
IEU-QNT Secretary

Carol Matthews
IEUA NSW/Acting ACT Secretary