15 hours of “Subsidised Early Education” for every 3 and 4 year old per week is not enough of a move in the right direction.
We need to get Early Childhood Education wrapped up into the public schooling system – full time, not subsidised but actually paid out of the public purse.
Childcare centres are no longer just babysitters, there is a level of eduction in them that exceeds that we saw in the old days of painting with potato stamps and eating peanut butter sandwiches.
Like it or not, kids are taking in more stimulus than ever before, they are becoming smarter than their forebears because of this. They therefore need structured classes earlier, they need more socialisation earlier.
Parents also need to have less burden from the ridiculous cost of early childcare. Some parents are working purely to pay for the childcare. Sure they could not work and just not send their kids, but many of the parents see it as a good opportunity for socialisation, which is likely one of the most important things we learn in schooling at any age.
Not to mention the Early Childcare system is full of corporations who are about maximising profit. They are making a bunch of money that parents could pay to the public purse instead.
So while I’ll never have my own children to put through the system, and I know I’ll likely have to pay more tax to pay for these initiatives, I welcome them. I welcome them because an educated populous makes for a strong culture. It means we’ll have well informed voters, people more likely to get better jobs and pay more taxes to keep the country going.
A good move by Labor, but I want to see more focus on education, early and elder.