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Werribee childcare centre operator charged after toddlers escape and run onto busy road

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werribee children care center

In Melbourne’s outer west, in March 2019 two young children running onto the road near a childcare center in Werribee. On November 1, it was confirmed Early Childhood Management Services would be charged over the incident.

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Melbourne child care center
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A Werribee childcare provider has been charged and could be hit with huge penalties after two toddlers escaped from one of its centers and ran onto a busy road as cars and vans hit the brakes.

The terrifying Dashcam footage captured the heart-stopping moment when the “two young children ran across two lanes of traffic on Ballan Road after getting out of the Werribee West Family Centre” on March 12.

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As the kids ran over the second lane of traffic, a driver got out of the car and led the children to safety on the side of the road.

Childcare workers then rush out and receive the toddlers.

Werribee West Family Centre is operated by Early Childhood Management Services (ECMS).

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The Department of Education and Training confirmed that charges had been laid against Early Childhood Management Services (ECMS), which has operated in Melbourne for more than two decades.

The safety of children being cared for by early childhood providers is of utmost importance,” she said.

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“The Department recently issued charges against Early Childhood Management Services following an incident at Werribee West Family Centre in March this year.”

ECMS chief executive Kim Bertino said the company had cooperated with the education department’s investigation.

“I would like to reiterate that we remain deeply sorry that this incident occurred and grateful that the children were unharmed,” Ms. Bertino said in a statement.

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“We have taken significant actions since the incident to moreover review and enforce methods at all our sites to shield the safety and wellbeing of children in our care.

“As the matter is now before the courts, we are unable to talk further.”

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The education department is responsible for monitoring early childhood services.

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Wheresoever alleged violations by childcare workers are substantiated the education department can take a range of actions. These include issuing compliance notices, suspending or canceling service or prosecuting the service provider in the Magistrates Court.

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