Finalists announced for the Victorian Early Years Awards
A kindergarten delivering its program in Auslan, a supported playgroup taking place at a shopping centre and a program providing wellbeing coaches for Koorie kids are among the finalists for the 11th annual Victorian Early Years Awards.
The Department of Education and Training announced 15 finalists across five different categories, including the Early Childhood Teacher of the Year.
The awards recognise excellence in the early childhood sector and celebrate those whose work has had a lasting positive effect on children and families.
Finalists come from across the state, and have been selected for their outstanding achievements in helping Victorian children grow up happy and healthy, improving the lives of families and making a significant difference to their communities.
Last year's winners included Clare Day, 2015 Early Childhood Teacher of the Year, who has used her prize money to further develop her skills and knowledge to support local families going through difficult times, including newly arrived refugee families.
Categories for the awards also include promoting children's health and wellbeing, supporting parents to build their capacity and confidence, creating collaborative community partnerships and improving access and participation in early learning. Winners will share in more than $80,000 in prize money.
The winners of each category, plus a special Minister's commendation, will be announced at a ceremony on 18 October 2016, just before Children's Week.
2016 Award Categories
Award category 1: Improving access and participation in early learning
This award is presented to an initiative or program that demonstrated outstanding achievement promoting access and ongoing participation and engagement in early learning, particularly for vulnerable and disadvantaged families.
Award category 2: Supporting parents to build their capacity and confidence
This award is presented to a service or partnership initiative that demonstrated outstanding achievement supporting parents and carers to feel confident and capable in their parenting role and actions, and to have recognised their role as first teachers in supporting their child's learning and development.
Award category 3: Creating collaborative community partnerships
This award is presented to a service or program that demonstrated outstanding achievements on how their partnership uses and promotes collaborative practice to support and demonstrate positive outcomes for children and families.
Award category 4:
Promoting children's health and wellbeing
This award is presented to an organisation or initiative that has demonstrated outstanding achievement promoting children's health and wellbeing.
Award category 5: Early childhood teacher of the year
This award is presented to an early childhood teacher who has demonstrated exemplary innovation and exemplary practice in early childhood education, made a significant contribution to the developement and delivery of high quality early childhood education programs and/or achieved significant improvements in children's learning and development outcomes.
Early childhood development is at the heart of the Victorian Government's vision for the Education State, and the Victorian Early Years Awards are an opportunity to recognise services that are leading the way to achieving this important goal.
Winners in categories 1,2,3 and 4 will receive $15,000 to further develop and share the learnings of their inovative approach, while the winner in the Early Childhood Teacher of the Year category will receive $10,000 to support their professional development goals.
If you have any questions about the Victorian Early Years Awards, please email
firstname.lastname@example.org or call (03) 9651 3393.
For more information about the winners in 2015, see:
Early Years Awards 2015 winners.