What gets you out of bed each day?
I get out of bed every day with a spring in my step because I am so inspired by every educator that works for Mother Duck. Some I have worked with for over 20 years and we have continued to always push each other for improvement and innovation in our practices with young children. Some are the educators I have seen grow over the past decade, those who gained their qualification with me through our old RTO and now are our new leaders. Then there are the brand-new educators I meet at induction that have no experience in working in this profession but are so passionate about young children and hold our Image of Child close to their hearts.
This year has taught me so much. At the start of March, I was stressed wondering every day what to expect. Were we going to have a COVID case in one of our Centres? Were the Government going to force our closure?
Our educators willingly dropped hours of work to protect the jobs of their teammates, worked additional hours if needed or even a different shift or day. They did whatever it took to support our Franchisees and of course, Mother Duck across this period. This resulted in the continuity of service for our families that were essential workers, and by that, I mean anyone that had a job. But also, to provide care for our vulnerable children which I see as any child living in a pandemic. Seeing the community approach demonstrated by our educators was what got me through this challenging time. I so admired the loyalty our educators demonstrated to support our business and ensure continuity of quality care for the children and families at this time. It still fills my heart with gratitude to work with such amazing ladies.
I would walk into studios and see smiling educators with happy children knowing full well that educator’s husband had just lost his job. I would have educators thank me with a genuine smile when I handed them a payslip when they had cut hours even though they had their own mortgage and bills to pay. I would have educators regularly stop me and genuinely ask me how I was going, and really listen to my answer. Whilst the Job Keeper package was a saviour for us, there were many aspects that were unfair with some educators receiving wage increases, whilst others were required to decrease. Not one educator complained about this, as they knew we were all trying our best.
On Wednesday the 2nd of September, it is Early Childhood Educators’ Day. As members of the Australian Childcare Alliance this has become a tradition at Mother Duck Childcare where we provide a beautiful gift for each educator and celebrate during the day. We normally request that families and children provide thanks through Centre displays and emails.
This year we were hoping our families could post their gratitude on our Centre Facebook pages. That way, our educators’ friends and family can read the posts, and we can spread the importance of early childhood educators and become advocates for the important work they do. Please jump on and like your Centre Facebook page and keep an eye out for the posts in relation to this. If you are not on Face Book, please contact your Nominated Supervisor or Centre Franchisee and let them know how you would like to join this cause.
Thanks in advance for helping with this initiative and helping celebrate Early Childhood Educators’ Day as part of our Mother Duck Community.