The Australian Nanny Association (ANA) is disappointed to see incorrect and unfounded claims about the suitability of nannies as a form of childcare from other parts of the childcare sector surface again in the public discussion about the future direction of childcare in Australia. It is important understand that nanny describes a specific professional role of providing childcare in the home environment and not confuse the title with other roles as defined on our website.
Some facts about professional nannies employed to care for children in Australia:
- Nannies have been providing approved childcare services in Australian homes within the government funded In Home Care scheme for since July 2000, and privately for much longer.
- All professional nannies are required to have the appropriate working with children’s and police checks as set by the state they are working in.
- Most nannies have an early childhood qualification, ranging from a Certificate III or Diploma in Children’s Services, through to a Bachelor Degree in Early Childhood Education. Some have nursing qualifications or other child related university degrees.
- Many have previously worked in childcare centres and moved into a nanny role for a career change or to provide childcare in a different setting.
- Nannies are often utilised in circumstances where more traditional forms of childcare are either unavailable or unsuitable. For example: families whose work commitments and childcare needs fall outside the availability of centre based care, or for children with special needs who require more individualised care at home. In home nanny care is also suitable for children of parents with a chronic illness or disability.
- Many Australian families who employ nannies also utilise long day care and pre-school programs in addition to nanny care.
- Nannies plan and implement age appropriate activities for children at home, along with taking children on outings and play dates to ensure their social and educational needs are catered to.
ANA, and the professional nannies working in Australia are continually shocked and distressed by the repeated, incorrect claims made about nannies and feel that it would be more beneficial for the sector to focus on collectively meeting the diverse needs of Australia’s children and their families.
ANA supports all forms of childcare and appreciates the value in each different service. There is no one-size-fits-all solution to the childcare needs of families and the childcare sector has a rare opportunity at the moment to help shape the future of childcare in Australia. There is no room for protectionism when it comes to creating a fair and equitable childcare system for Australian families, and ANA hopes that the childcare sector as a whole can work together for the benefit of Australia’s children.
Annemarie Sansom, ANA Vice President / Spokesperson