PUTRAJAYA: There is a dire need for more qualified childcare workers and registered childcare centres in the country, says Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.
The Deputy Prime Minister said that these shortages could adversely affect the safety and quality of care for Malaysian children.
“Data from the Welfare Department showed that up to June this year, the number of childcare workers looking after children four years and below is 16,873.
“Out of this, only 3,173 of them have the minimum qualification of a childcare course,” said Dr Wan Azizah, who is also Women, Family and Community Development Minister.
She was speaking at the launch of the National Childcare Centre Day 2018 themed “Equality” at the IOI City Mall here yesterday.
Dr Wan Azizah added that the rest of childcare workers in the country, all 13,700 or 80.19% of them, did not have the minimum qualification for the job.
She said the lack of qualified childcare workers contributed to the lack of registered childcare centres in the country.
“Calculations based on a census done by Malaysian Statistics Department showed that we need to have 38,333 registered childcare centres.
“However, the actual number at present is only 4,302,” she said.
Dr Wan Azizah said her ministry took a serious view on the safety of children at childcare centres and at the homes of childcare providers.
“We are looking at the need to improve on the Child Care Centre Act and regulations on childcare centres to fit the current needs and situation,” she said.
She added that her ministry was also studying how to utilise information and communication technology to be included in the childcare system in the country.