Financial incentives for qualified kinder teachers

Early childhood teacher, Megan Ellard, standing in front of the children in her / they class. Teacher and children are singing a song. 

[Megan Ellard]

So, I wanted to be a kinder teacher because I really love the energy of small children.

[Children continue singing and are copying the teacher by rubbing their faces with their hands.]

I think it's really rewarding to be part of their lives and, you know, they are so into education and learning at this age.

[Camera zooms in on Megan. She / they has short, pink hair with a headband and is wearing a striped dress and green cardigan.]

I'm Megan Ellard and I'm a Three- and Four-Year-Old Kindergarten teacher here at Fish Creek Kindergarten.

[Teacher leads the children through nature at Fish Creek Kindergarten.]

Fish Creek Kindergarten runs a nature-based pedagogy which means that we try and incorporate natural items in our teaching practice every day.

[A teacher and child look at a tree, then the child traces their figures around a picture of an insect that is stuck on the tree.]

So, I moved from St Kilda at the end of 2019 to start my role here in 2020.

[Megan is standing with her / they hand on the hip, in front of the Fish Creek sign. Megan is then seen speaking directly to the camera in a kindergarten room setting.]  

And it was a big change... Obviously, going from an inner Melbourne suburb to coming out here. I couldn't believe how scenic and beautiful it was out here. I hadn't spent a lot of time in South Gippsland before.

[Megan walks down a street in the town of Fish Creek.]

There's lots of people here who've been here for generations and they're farming families. Then there's also a lot of people who relocate here from Melbourne. So, I knew that I would really fit in and the things that I value would really work out here.

[Megan walks through Fish Creek Kindergarten and the children follow her. Megan is then seen reading to the children a book on the grass outside.]

To relocate here I was able to apply for an incentive and that money really helped me set up my new home. I was able to pay for some of the relocation fees and the bond. That was really positive. It really did provide some support in that time of change.

[Aerial footage of the town of Fish Creek can be seen, including the words '1884 Fish Creek 1984' in white pebbles.]

I've maybe had more space to really think about my teaching practice as well. I feel like when you live in a big area like St Kilda, where I was living, you're just busy all the time and that's not at all what life is like in a regional area. In some ways it's just more meaningful and measured.

[Children are seen smiling directly at the camera.]

Working with children is so rewarding. They are so curious; they are so excited. And it's just so great to get to be part of that.

[Megan reads the children a book, now in the kindergarten. The teacher points to a photo of a dog.]

It's just really wonderful to see that curiosity and that A-HA! moment when you teach them something and they're so excited to find out about it, they've never heard anything like that before. So, it is really positive and exciting to get to be that person.

[Camera zooms in on Megan, who can be seen crossing her arms and smiling.  

[on screen text] 

3-Year-Old Kinder. Best Start. Best Life, followed by the Victoria State Government logo. 

[on screen text] 

Authorised by the Victorian Government, Melbourne.

 [End of transcript]