News

Maccas pays more than childcare industry - centre director

Sheri Laidlaw from Elfin House Child Care has some ideas on how to improve childcare in Australia. Photo: Chris Ison / The Morning Bulletin
Sheri Laidlaw from Elfin House Child Care has some ideas on how to improve childcare in Australia. Photo: Chris Ison / The Morning Bulletin Chris Ison

DURING her 13 years in the childcare industry Sheri Laidlaw has seen plenty of people come and go.

The director of Rockhampton's Elfin House Community Childcare Centre puts it down to the qualifications and expectations of the role not matching wages.

"The average worker can earn more per hour at McDonald's than working on the floor in a childcare centre," Sheri said.

Speaking to The Morning Bulletin yesterday about the Productivity Commission's draft report into Childcare and Early Childhood Learning, Sheri said closing the pay gap was just one way to improve the industry.

The draft report, released yesterday, aims to make childcare more affordable and create a more financially sustainable system for taxpayers in the long term.

Recommendations include means testing the rebate, with low income families eligible for up to 90% back on fees, and streamlined subsidies being paid directly to the chosen centre.

Sheri said the recommendations would only act as a "bandaid solution" rather than improving the system for the future.

While she agreed there still needs to be means testing, Sheri said the rebate should be given per child in childcare.

But Sheri said the streamlined rebates being paid direct to a centre would be beneficial for parents.

"It will just take the stress off them," she said.

Sheri said many families with two parents working and a child in daycare found that one salary was almost entirely dedicated to childcare fees.

But Sheri said families in Rockhampton fared better than their capital city counterparts spending an average of $80 and $85 per day, compared to more than $100 a day at centres in Brisbane.

Ultimately, Sheri said this put a strain on families emotionally and financially, leaving them questioning whether it was worth returning to work.

The final report will be handed down at the end of October.

Caring for our kids

Key recommendations from the draft report:

  • Replace multiple subsidies with a single rebate paid directly to chosen centre
  • Means testing of the rebate, with eligible families receiving a minimum of 30%
  • Nannies to be eligible for subsidies
  • Restrictions removed on number of places and hours of operation needed for centres to receive subsidies
  • Schools to be responsible for before and after school care
  • Continuation of government support for all children to go to preschool a year before starting school
  • Increased funding for children with disabilities and additional needs

Source: Productivity Commission

Topics:  career, childcare, productivity commission



UPDATE: Two people airlifted after serious crash

Emergency Services: Ambulance, QAS,Photo Bev Lacey / The Chronicle

Emergency services clear the scene of serious crash

Dad misses son's first birthday to train for war

Miliatary Expert 2 Muhammad Efendi Ismail, Technician, Vehicle Recovery OIC, FSG

Leaving family behind to fight for Singapores freedom

Local Partners

Trump's comments make light of statutory rape

Trevor Noah has gone to town on Donald Trump's sexism

Forza Horizon 3 review: Australia's never looked so good

Fancy racing a freight train?

Byron Bay, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Twelve Apostles feature

Tommy goes home in emotional Bachelorette episode

The Bachelorette contestant Tommy Saggus.

BRISBANE bachelor hopes show will give him more confidence.

Kim Kardashian West wants restraining order against prankster

She was attacked by Vitalii Sediuk for the second time in two years

Cliff Richard to release 101st album

Sir Cliff Richard's album cover

Sir Cliff Richard is to release his 101st album

Beach-side real estate starts at $85k on Fraser Coast

HERVEY BAY REAL ESTATE: You can buy this townhouse in Scarness for under $300k.

Live your beach-living dream locally.

$40million hotel, shops development project for Mackay

Mt Pleasant hotel and retirement accommodation, proposed at 194-202 Malcomson St.

$40m development to take Mackay to 'the next level'

Projects hoped to revive Rockhampton real estate

There have been just over 800 house sales in Rockhampton this year

Property 200m from ocean selling for just over $100K

BEACHCOMBER PARK: Work has started on a new $19.2 million development at Toogoom.

The estate's developer is offering huge discounts for early buyers.

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

First stages of $25 million housing development underway

New development on Madsen Rd - The Springs.

The blocks of land are much bigger than usual