Cloncurry Childcare Centre, in Queensland's outback, has been looking for a childcare teacher for the council's early learning centre for three years but has been unsuccessful in doing so. There haven't been any applicants for the position despite the offer of a new $6 million facility or a $150,000 wage package.
A salary of more than $100,000 plus superannuation as well as free accommodation and relocation payments have failed to lure even a single application to the role, Mr Campbell said.
That is despite the council encouraging graduates to apply.
"It's an offer of about $150,000 all up, which should be a pretty awesome offer for someone straight out of university," Mr Campbell said. "Not to mention the opportunity to teach young minds in the legendary Queensland Outback, surrounded by a team of supportive staff."
Greg Campbell, the mayor of Cloncurry, stated that despite having been granted an exemption from a law requiring childcare teachers at facilities a few years ago, the city is now being forced to comply "We'll need to request yet another exception if we don't find a teacher soon. We've had a lot of trouble finding anyone to apply for the job, let alone the ideal individual. Children were also being denied access to educational opportunities that could only be provided by early childhood educators".
At least 25 per cent of the people employed in the Cloncurry shire are employed in mining critical minerals — copper, zinc, gold, all those critical minerals that the state, the country, and the world need on the path to decarbonisation.
Having a daycare and childcare centre is crucial to those jobs and to the future of the town," Mayor Campbell said.
Mr Campbell said that in a world where skills shortages were impacting everyone, especially the childcare industry, the outback had a lot to offer. "We know we're not alone with this issue, but we really do think the location and the culture out here are a huge point of difference," he said. "So, come to Cloncurry. The kids are here, and the country is spectacular."
Cloncurry Childcare Centre's $150k Salary Package Not Enough To Lure Teachers To Queensland Outback, ABC News, 23 December 2022