Anarchy & the EYLF Pirates

Refuse. Resist. Rebuild.

Back from the Dead Red


Back from the Dead Red (Jacquotte Delahaye) has to fake her death once again to survive the dichotomy of working within the early childhood sector.

It is like walking a tightrope. Constantly trying to balance between who I want to be as early childhood advocate and who the business wants me to be as a seller of a product. There are days when I want to launch across the corporate table but end up vocalising “I hear what you’re saying”. Whilst I am actually internally deliberating “am I going to beat them with humour, or so much intellectual jargon that they think in some sense they have won the argument”.

We are compounded by the social pressure, not only by the families and communities we ‘serve’ but the powers that be that pay our wages. Ethical educators are in the industry due to the potential we can have in empowering future generations to be the best they can and reach their full potential.

However when attempting to bring down the barriers that inhibit positive change, we can’t afford to put offside the people that supply the resources. In doing so we find ourselves gagged.

Being the face of an organisation, I end up speaking the company lines, the slogans that I don’t completely believe to the people I am supposed to be serving, and in doing so I seem to instead serve the community of people whose pockets are being lined at the expense of the customer. It’s a political issue.

How can I hope to lead and challenge our industry when it has become more about the politics and control and less about the pedagogy. The losers in this will forever be the children.

Is the industry too afraid to step outside the box?

Instead do they cling to the familiar and what they know out of fear?

Has our industry become based purely on consumerism?

(c) Jacquotte Delahaye, Guest Pirate 2016

Anarchy & the EYLF Pirates.

Refuse. Resist. Rebuild.


8 comments on “Back from the Dead Red

  1. linda
    January 18, 2016

    Well said!!

  2. Amac
    January 18, 2016

    Sometimes, even in a NFP, challenging management gets you in trouble or even pushed to the edge, where resignation is the only option. Passion for ECEC, putting the child’s needs first and even a history of high QA ratings isn’t enough to satisfy a fearful and risk averse management.

  3. Pingback: Back from the Dead Red | thinkingaboutkids

  4. hometrans
    January 19, 2016

    No ! there are still some of us left that serve the kids, have passion, stand up for integrity, serve ourselves, say what needs to be said, and still exceed! Stay true to your beliefs or come and work for me ! We miss your posts !

  5. Freya
    January 19, 2016

    I too have had these thoughts – there’s been a similar partially formed rant circulating in my mind, boldly titled “I sold my soul to corporate, and I would have gotten away with it too, if it weren’t for you meddling kids”.

    On reading and connecting with your thoughts, I wondered if part of the problem wasn’t in the dreaded use of “the I word”- in terming and thinking of the work we do with children and families as an industry, rather than a sector, are we doomed before we have begun?

    If those of us within the sector are still using the word industry, aren’t we just re-enforcing the same message we are trying to resist – that children and families are products and recipients of products, rather than sentient beings?

  6. Irene
    January 19, 2016

    I was in this situation…. Completely fought for children, in the end my values were no longer in line with the people who were paying my wages, the culture changed, so now moving on.

  7. norasaneka
    January 21, 2016

    “Kies jou vyande met groot oorleg. ‘n Toegewyde vyand is ‘n onuitputlike inspirasiebron.” “Choose your enemies with great consideration. A dedicated enemy is a inexhaustible inspiration.”

    – Hennie Aucamp

  8. Janet Schluter
    February 25, 2016

    As a private approved provider desperate to be part of re conceptualizing early childhood, I understand your dilemma. I stand up for the children and often lose families because it doesn’t look and sound the same as the corporate chain up the road. I visit service webpages and am stunned by the brazen marketing for Literacy Hour, Rostered iPad time and Prep Prep Programs – but this is what the customer wants. How do we tread the line between advocacy and respecting parents desires as the “expert in their children’s lives”?

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