This work has generated rich insights about catalysing transformation in Australia’s early years systems. 18 leverage points were assessed and categorised into four clusters: 

  1. Put communities and families in the driver’s seat.  
  2. Reimagine the service system. 
  3. Ensure shared accountability for children’s outcomes.   
  4. Shift society’s perspectives.  

For each leverage point, the assessment delves into the intent and potential impact on early childhood development (ECD) outcomes, providing real-world case studies of successful implementation and promising practices. It also explores potential barriers, unintended consequences and lessons learned.  

Key observations from the assessment include:  

  • Altering societal perspectives is complex and challenging.  
  • Transformative change requires sustained, long-term commitment.  
  • Evidence suggests that transformative societal changes are possible.  
  • The process involves navigating complex and deeply held beliefs.  
  • Strategic efforts and collaboration play a crucial role in altering societal mindsets.  

Designed for those passionate about improving ECD outcomes, this report invites readers to reflect on their role in influencing systemic change to contribute to the positive transformation of Australia’s early years system.  

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Evidence for Action

Key Findings

  • Introduction
  • How to use this report
  • Leverage points and case studies by cluster
  • The assessment process
  • Top 5 leverage points
  • The leverage points ranked 1-18
  • Implications
  • Where to from here?
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Evidence for Action

The Approach

  • Introduction
  • The project and key steps
  • Leverage point assessment framework
  • Evidence and case studies
  • Limitations of the approach
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Evidence for Action

Cluster 1

Communities & Families in the Driver’s Seat

  • Shifting decision-making power
  • Funding and commissioning approaches
  • Funding flows
  • Feedback loops
  • Amplifying family and community voices
  • Recognising families and those with lived experience
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Evidence for Action

Cluster 2

Reimagining the Service System

  • Expanding the universal service system
  • Investing in proactive and preventative child protection system
  • Ensuring high quality workforce
  • Recognising the voice of children
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Evidence for Action

Cluster 3

Shared Accountability for Children’s Outcomes 

  • Reforming culture of measurement and evaluation
  • Enforcing accountability for outcomes
  • Guaranteeing equitable access to services
  • Ensuring basic material needs are met
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Evidence for Action

Cluster 4

Shifting Society’s Perspectives 

  • Shifting socio-cultural identity to prioritise wellbeing of children
  • Changing framing and conceptualisation of “care”
  • Shifting mindset to recognise First Nations ways of knowing, learning, being and doing
  • Shifting societal perspective of disadvantage and difference
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