The other end of the Information and Enquiries line

Based on Darug land, Information and Enquiries Coordinator Pam Gray shares her insights on how the Early Childhood Education team engages with families and services to support positive outcomes for children.

If you have ever contacted the team at the Department of Education, you will have spoken with one of our friendly Information and Enquiries team members who play a role in supporting families and services across NSW.

The Information and Enquiries team respond to up to 200 calls and 100 emails per day, supporting services and providers through queries around the National Law and Regulations, NQAITS portal, Child Care Subsidy and much more.

The team is led by Information and Enquiries Coordinator, Pam Gray, who has worked in the department for over 12 years.

“We are a team that is passionate about the sector and the safety, health and wellbeing of all children,” Pam said.

In her role, Pam supports her team to stay informed about changes within the sector, while providing valuable insights into current trends which help guide the work of the department.

One important function of the Information and Enquiries team is to handle feedback and complaints about services or the Regulatory Authority.

“We deal with every complaint the same, regardless of who it’s about. We listen, we are respectful and take all the relevant information. It’s important that all complaints are taken and dealt with in a fair and equitable way," Pam said.

The team also receives positive feedback from services and families about their interactions with the Regulatory Authority and Pam views this as an important way of understanding how the department can best support the sector.

“We love getting calls with good feedback as they always make us feel we are doing all this for the right reasons.

“We need to get the good with the bad to help us make improvements to the way we do business, but also to recognise what we are doing right.”

Pam shared that, in recent years, most enquiries relating to Quality Area 2 have had to do with COVID-19.

“The pandemic was a challenging time for everyone in keeping up with a constantly changing environment. But it has always been our priority to provide families and services with current information and advice to help them keep children safe.”

This year, the Information and Enquiries team has also played an important role in supporting families and services through the flood crises across NSW.

“We have received some emotional calls from families and services wanting to find care for their children that had been displaced, or to bring some normality back to their communities,” Pam said.

“These calls can be tough but if we can’t help the caller immediately, we certainly put them in touch with someone who can.”

To improve policies and practices under Quality Area 2, Pam suggests that services refer to ACECQA’s information sheets on toileting and nappy changing, active supervision and safe transportation of children, as well as the ratio calculator.

“We are always happy to walk callers through different websites and resources to assist them with finding what they are looking for.”

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