A highly regarded expert with over four decades of experience in Early Childhood Education and Care has taken out this year’s QUT Faculty of Education Outstanding Alumni Award for her dedication to early childhood learning.
Since her graduation in 1992, Jane Bourne has demonstrated a commitment to supporting children in their learning and advocating for improvements in the Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) to benefit children and their families.
Jane is the CEO of The Creche and Kindergarten Association, a not-for-profit organisation regarded as one of Australia's leading providers of childcare and kindergarten with more than 330 centres around Queensland.
While managing the impacts of the pandemic on the ECEC sector, Jane has ensured that children, parents and employees remain safe, engaged and supported through implementing a range of personal communication strategies, including CEO videos and daily emails.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority, Gabrielle Sinclair, explained how Jane’s leadership and commitment to education continues to have a significant impact on the state and national public policies and programs.
“Jane’s opinions and advice are routinely sought by education ministers, education departments and regulatory authorities.
“It would be difficult to envisage any new state or national programs or projects which were not first tested with, and quality assured by Jane.”
Jane has also been at the forefront of major changes to the policy and regulatory environments of ECEC in Queensland through her membership of Queensland Government advisory committees to drive the State’s implementation of significant national reforms, including the National Quality Framework changes and the roll out of universal access to kindergarten in Queensland.
Alongside her assured business acumen, Jane works very closely with universities, including QUT, to promote leadership in the ECEC sector and to inspire the next generation of educators to provide children with outstanding learning outcomes. She remains a dedicated teacher who never loses sight of the important role of education in the early years of life.
The annual QUT Outstanding Alumni Awards recognise outstanding graduates of the university, and its predecessor institutions, who have displayed exceptional professional, academic or research achievements and contributions to the community.