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Learning, Development and Inclusion

Annette Barwick

Annette Barwick

General Manager Learning, Development and Inclusion

“within an ever-changing and challenging landscape…our people…demonstrated innovation, resilience and a deep commitment and drive to continue to make a difference.” 

At the heart of the Learning, Development and Inclusion (LD&I) program areas are our people. Shared goals as a team and individual dedication and drive are what provided a solid foundation for the past financial year and into the future. Therefore, I must firstly acknowledge ‘our people’ who, within an ever changing and challenging landscape, demonstrated innovation, resilience and a deep commitment and drive to continue to make a difference.

For children to thrive, our people need to thrive. This statement encapsulates the essence of the LD&I program areas. I am privileged to lead this exceptional team and give you a glimpse into the considerable influence and impact of the work undertaken by the LD&I team over the past financial year. 

In closing, as the LD&I team embark on the next chapter, the annual report has provided an opportunity to not only highlight LD&I teams’ key achievements, but to reflect on the exceptional work and commitment of this team in realising the vision and goals of the organisation. Thank you!

Gowrie Training & Consultancy – Project Insights

Gowrie Training & Consultancy (GT&C) oversee several short-term and long-term external and internal projects that focus on community and the education and care workforce. These projects are either directly funded to Lady Gowrie Tasmania and/or contracted through Early Childhood Australia, Tasmania Branch to operationalise.

Early Years and School Age Care (EYSAC) Workforce Strategy

This project focused on ‘a proficient professional and activated Tasmanian early years and school age care workforce now and into the future’.  The Project Manager, Kellie Watson, continued to strengthen engagement and consultation, unearth possibilities and opportunities, and support sector connections in the delivery of actions designed to address workforce challenges. This important work is essential in ensuring quality outcomes for children, families and indeed educators themselves. An achievement to be recognised is that the work of EYSAC, has become particularly visible with local, state and federal government in the current climate of workforce shortages, with an increased focus on wages and conditions and an understanding of the value of early learning and the importance of education and care provision to the economy. 

GT&C continued to support and operationalise projects attached to the Early Years and School Age Care (EYSAC) Workforce Strategy throughout the year. 

Collaboration across the Sector, Registered Training Organisations, Apprenticeship Providers, Job Actives, schools and colleges, and government and non-government organisations agencies contributed to the successes. Projects included:

Building Sustainable Workforce Foundations

Within this project, supported and funded through the Tasmanian Government, Department of State Growth, there were three sequential, interdependent and complimentary phases; 

  • Employer readiness through action research, building relationships with the school communities
  • Development of a suite of tools (Be the Difference) to inform career decision making and workforce planning and development.
  • Additionally, development of a mentoring program, including delivery of a suite of webinars and a series of online coaching workshops.  

The ‘Be the Difference’ postcard, brochure, career guide, career pathway roadmap and videos have continued to receive positive feedback and are available to view and download on the EYSAC Online Hub. 

Growing Apprenticeships and Traineeships

Industry and Regionally Led Solutions (GATIRS) Program – Building EYSAC sector capability for trainees concentrated on upskilling educators in the sector who work with and support trainees. Within this project, supported and funded through the Tasmanian Government, Department of State Growth, GT&C managed resource development and continued to chair the EYSAC Collaborative Network, which was established in the previous year. Through consultation with the network, several key resources were finalised and published in early 2022 to support traineeships in education and care:

  • Stakeholder Guide to Traineeships for Employers
  • Stakeholder Guide to Traineeships for Trainees. 

A legacy of this project is the ongoing Collaborative Network, a group of stakeholders who are determined to champion traineeships in and for the education and care sector.

Australian Government Local Jobs Program

Lady Gowrie Tasmania partnered with Workskills Inc. to deliver the Lady Gowrie Tasmania Pathway to a Traineeship (LGTPT) Program, funded through the Australian Government Local Jobs Program. The project involved job seekers undertaking a pre-employment program through GT&C, tailored to working in the early childhood education and care sector. The objective of this program was to meet the demand for entry-level trainees in Lady Gowrie Tasmania early childhood services, and in doing so provide employment and traineeship opportunities for participants with an interest in pursuing a vocation in the sector, and to build workforce capacity – a direct pipeline. Outcome – 16 participants are in employment with Lady Gowrie Tasmania, and one is on their way to a new employment pathway.

Migrant Resource Centre – Pathway to Education and Care

Gowrie Training & Consultancy partnered with the Migrant Resource Centre, Hobart in the development and implementation of the Pathways to Education and Care program. The overarching goal for this project was to give community members from the Migrant Resource Centre (MRC) an opportunity to gain knowledge and awareness of work in early childhood education and care – a ‘taster’ for future interest in study (Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care) and work in the sector. The project commenced with 23 participants and is due for completion in August 2022.

First Steps Towards Physical Health and Wellbeing

A series of four Infant and toddler parent and child yoga workshops were delivered by Gowrie Training & Consultancy (GT&C) at Geeveston in partnership with wayraparattee Child and Family Learning Centre in July 2021. These workshops were possible through the support of Calvary Community Council Grants.        

The project, designed to strengthen parents’ capability as key agents in their children’s positive physical development, responded to Australian Early Development Census (AEDC) data and information, which showed from 2009 to 2018, children developmentally ‘on track’ in the Physical health and wellbeing developmental domain in the Huon Valley significantly DECREASED from 80.8% to 65.8%, while children ‘at risk’ significantly INCREASED from 7.3% to 20.8%. In nine years, there had been no significant improvement for vulnerable children in the Huon Valley (12%-13.4%). 

Geeveston/Cygnet B4 Community Story Tellers

GT&C continued to work actively in the Huon Valley throughout the year with the delivery of the Geeveston/Cygnet B4 Community Story Tellers project, which was supported and funded by the Tasmanian Government B4 Story Teller Grants. This project delivered a series of six face-to-face workshops and complimenting online yarning circles to two Huon Valley communities to build community capability in promoting the three B4 Early Years Coalition goals:

  1. Everyone values the early years.
  2. Everyone supports the early years.
  3. Everyone works together for the early years.

Initially scheduled for early 2021, the COVID-19 pandemic slowed the delivery of this project. Consultation with B4 ensured that the project was able to be delivered, as intended, late in the year.

Projects developed in 2021-2022, approved and funded for delivery in 2022-23: 
  • Premier’s Fund for Children and Young People: Young Makers – Kingborough Council
  • Lady Gowrie Tasmania Leadership Program
  • Australian Government, Workforce Australia Local Jobs Program – Good Fit Tool development and pilot for EYSAC Workforce.
  • Workforce Coordination Project – Work Ready Team (TasCOSS)
Gowrie Training & Consultancy – Non-accredited Training
  • 15 Events
  • 34 OSHC online introductory course
  • 202 Online courses
  • 30 Children’s workshops
  • 14 Individual education and care customised programs 
  • 8 Intensive professional learning programs

A highlight in the non-accredited space is the influence of change observed by internal and external services from the work of Scott Gibson, who has worked tirelessly with a number of OSHC services to make a difference in young people’s lives.


Gowrie Training & Consultancy – Registered Training Organisation (45602)

2021/2022. The Registered Training Organisation (RTO) through the leadership of Kerrie Hansen were successful in achieving a seven (7) year RTO accreditation. With the RTO only operating for less than two years in its own right, this achievement speaks to the commitment of the team in ensuring a quality and compliant training pathway for current and future learners. 

Kerrie transitioned to a new role as Project Manager, Workforce Coalition Project, which is evident in the opportunities and career pathways within Lady Gowrie Tasmania. 

Newly recruited to the RTO Manager position, I hope to draw on my extensive sector knowledge and leadership experience within this space, where a key focus is now the transition to the new Certificate III and Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care qualifications. The RTO also said goodbye to Sally Burgess and welcomed Jane Richardson to the RTO administrative role. Jane brings extensive RTO experience from her previous career as an RTO Manager. We welcomed back Allison Goldsmith from parental leave and Elaine Lui commenced parental leave. Although a year of staff changes, the RTO continued to grow in both numbers and quality and this is due to the hard work of the people mentioned above and Rebecca Hayes, Ritu Maharesh and Mel Johnson who amongst these changes, supported the seamless staff transition.  

104 Certificate III learners and 96 Diploma learners were supported in their qualification pathway during 2021/2022. 102 learners were Lady Gowrie Tasmania employees.

It is also important to recognise community connections and how working together can reduce barriers. One example is the South-East Regional Development Association (SERDA) partnership with GT&C, that enabled 10 educators to undertake the Diploma of Education and Care qualification delivered within the Sorell municipality. The educators are on track to complete their studies by the end of 2022. Thank you SERDA for making a difference. 

Kim Jones – Registered Training Organisation Manager

Inclusion Support Program (ISP) – An Australian Government Funded Program

Lady Gowrie Tasmania (LGT) is the Inclusion Agency (IA) for Tasmania and assists eligible education and care services to provide and embed quality inclusive practices for all children with a key focus on supporting the inclusion of children with additional needs, with their peers, so as children have genuine opportunities to access, participate and engage with positive learning experiences. This small team with exceptional service delivery accomplished 1494 face-to-face coaching and support visits.

An example of an Innovative Solutions Projects Funding is:

Southern OSHC Project – Creating an environment of change to support challenging behaviours in OSHC

Facilitated through Gowrie Training & Consultancy (Scott Gibson) and Tracey Deayton (Autism Consultant, Department of Education).

Commenced in March 2022 and to be completed in September 2022. This project involved 20 participating OSHC services, 44 educators and 8 coaches (leaders within services/organisations).

Participants attended 3 professional learning workshops and received 3 coaching sessions from facilitators as a component of the program.

Application for Collaborative and Strategic Funding – 1 (Trauma Informed Practice) – comprised:

Partnership between Inclusion Agency Tasmania, University of Tasmania and Early Childhood Australia (ECA) – Tasmania Branch. The project comprised 7 professional learning sessions (Trust-based Relational Intervention), 21 learning circles (7 within each region). Presentation re impact of project – ECA Tasmania Branch / B4 Forum. 120 educators participated in professional learning sessions which included educators from King Island and Flinders Island. Targeted to Educational Leaders or Early Childhood Teacher (leadership roles within services). Inclusion professionals continue to support the implementation of the project within ECEC services statewide!

The Inclusion Agency Tasmania team look forward to sharing the outcomes of these projects over the coming months.

Roxanne Ellis – Support Services Manager


In Home Care Agency

In Home Care (IHC), an Australian Government funded program, supports families’ workforce participation and early childhood education and care requirements where other approved education and care services are not available or appropriate, particularly for families; 

  • working non-standard or variable hours
  • geographically isolated from other approved education and care services, or
  • with complex and challenging needs.

The objective of IHC is to provide a high quality, flexible early childhood education and care option to families for whom other approved education and care options are not available or appropriate due to their unique circumstances. 

As at 30th June 2022, there were 21 families receiving In Home Care and 15 families on the waitlist (waiting for an available educator through a IHC Service Provider).

There are three (3) IHC Service Providers registered to operate in Tasmania. 

Roxanne Ellis – Support Services Manager