Early childhood educators play an essential role in giving Australia’s earliest generation an excellent play-based learning practice, including kindergarten/preschool programs, before beginning recognized schooling.

If you have a desire to work with children, appreciate being part of a team, and want to make a progressive difference in the lives of others, then early childhood education and care may be the right occupation for you.

Top 5 reasons to consider starting a career in early learning today.

Reliable employment in a sector with strong demand

With over 1.3 million children through over 974,600 families using official early learning services in Australia, there is a very strong, ongoing ultimatum for qualified, skilled candidates to take on the roles of early childhood educators and instructors. The number of service providers endures to grow annually, and the demand for early childhood professionals is expected to continue strong.

Earn while you learn

New entrants into the early learning profession can start without any existing qualifications in the field, by becoming a trainee/apprentice. Early learning (child care) employers may offer you a position that includes a Traineeship or Apprenticeship, which allows you to obtain a nationally recognised qualification while working and gaining appreciated experience in the sector.

Traineeships/Apprenticeships are available to people of all ages and phases of life, including high school students and persons wanting to start, change or advance their career.

The course involves an adaptable number of study hours which you can do off-site or at home, along with the on-site work and applied learning at the early learning service.

Career path in a variety of settings

Early learning professionals offers a linear career path which starts at entry-level by becoming a trainee. In the first instance you may choose to work in early learning (centre-based, long day care) service, kindergartens/preschools or outside school hours care.

Once an early childhood educator, you may like to take on further studies to become a lead educator, educational leader, Early Childhood Teacher, or Nominated Supervisor. From there you may wish to take on center support roles, such as a Centre Manager, an Area or Operations Manager, administration, consultative, early childhood training roles, or work that oversees quality and compliance.

Professional roles in the early learning sector are varied, so there’s always room for you to grow, build on your existing skillsets, and expand your responsibilities.

Study for free – Govt funding available


If you’re eligible, you can earn your qualification in the early learning sector for free, or from just $1 to $2 per unit, thanks to government funding. Courses available under these initiatives include the CHC30121 Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care and CHC50121 Diploma in Early Childhood Education and Care.

As funding for these courses varies in each state, we recommend you check in with your relevant state/territory Department of Education (visit their website or give them a call) to find out about the funding available.

What qualification do I need to work in Early Childhood Education in Australia?

If you would like to become an Early Childhood Educator, you will need either a Certificate 3 in Early Childhood Education and Care (CHC30121), or a Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care (CHC50121).

There are many opportunities for you in the field of Early Childhood. You can gain additional qualifications to become an Early Childhood Teacher or a Service Director.

Being an early childhood educator means conquering daily challenges. Working with children requires patience and compassion, but it also means enjoying numerous positive and heartening experiences with the children, their families and your team. It’s an extremely rewarding career path for those with a genuine desire to support children in their early years.

If you see yourself enjoying a long career in early childhood education, undertaking Traineeship/Apprenticeship at an early learning service may be the perfect solution.

To find out more, talk to a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) about the courses available or speak right to your local early learning services about work and training opportunities at their centre. You will need a Working with Children Check/Police check for this purpose, which can be organised by your relevant state/territory government.

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