- Why study early childhood education and care in Australia?
- What is the career outcome after the completion of Early Childhood Education and Care courses in Australia?
- What Early Childhood Education and Care courses are available for international students?
- What do you learn in an Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) course?
- What are entry requirements for international students to study Early Childhood Education and Care courses?
- How much does it cost to study ECEC in Australia?
- What is the Permanent Residency (PR) pathway after completing ECEC courses?
- How to pass skill assessments for a childcare centre manager in Australia?
- How to pass skill assessments for a childcare group leader in Australia?
Early childhood education and care (ECEC) programs are proved to assist the physical, cognitive, emotional and social developments for children. The benefit of ECEC program encourages parents to send children to childcare centres and kindergartens instead of keeping them at home. Currently, an increasing number of parents want to engage in paid employment after maternity leave, making early childhood educators a high demand profession in Australia. From June to August 2022, an average of 4549 job advertisements were posted each month for Early childhood educator positions, making the job market for Early childhood educators ranked at 5th in the list of top 20 in-demand jobs in Australia.
Why study early childhood education and care in Australia?
- No specific educational background needed
If you are a high school graduate, you can either start with a Certificate III of Early Childhood Education and Care or enrol in a Diploma program on Early Childhood Education and Care. You can study these courses with limited or zero background knowledge in the field. You will be taught from the very basic skills and knowledge to educate and care for children.
- Multiple Start Dates
Most schools provide many intakes in a year, so you can start your education journey when it is most suitable to your circumstances.
- Post-Study Work Visa
By studying 2 years or more in ECEC programs, international students will be eligible for a 2- 4-year Temporary Graduate Visas (subclass 485). Graduates can make use of these visa opportunities to gain more work experience and prepare for their future migration options.
- A high chance of getting a stable job after graduation
According to the Australian Government’s Job Outlook service, there will be around 10,000 childcare centre managers required in Australia over the next five years. The number for Early childhood educators/workers is around 184,000 jobs, giving ECEC graduates a market full of opportunities.
- Gaining necessary knowledge to care for your own children
At the same time of working as an ECEC educator, you will be provided with valuable knowledge to care for your own children.
- A chance to get a PR
Childcare centre managers and childcare group/room leaders are in the skilled occupation list for PR application. After studying 2 years in Australia and gaining necessary work experience, you are able to apply for a skilled visa (subclass 189, 190, 491) or an Employer Sponsored Visas (494) which allows you stay permanently in Australia.
What is the career outcome after the completion of Early Childhood Education and Care courses in Australia?
- Early childhood worker
Childcare Workers contribute to the social, emotional and educational development of children by involving in both care and educational activities. They are responsible for the overall health and safety of children, supervising their personal hygiene routines, providing emergency first aid if required, supporting their play and learning, and guiding them with appropriate behaviour when alone and when interacting with other children.
- Early childhood group leaders
Early childhood group/room leaders are responsible to develop and implement an education program that is in line with the Early Years Learning Framework. Their jobs are to manage and assign tasks to other staff members who work in the room. By consulting with team members, they ensure that the room is kept in a safe, clean condition and that care of children is placed first and foremost in all decision making for activities in the room. The leaders also provide general supervision, guidance and support to all people working in the room, for examples staff, students and volunteers.
- Childcare centre Manager
The general roles of a Childcare Centre Manager is to plan and implement educational activities and programs for the development and growth of young children. The manager usually supervises a team of Childcare Workers and Educators to provide everyday care services for young children.
What Early Childhood Education and Care courses are available for international students?
There are two main ECEC training programs.
- Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care:
This qualification is to meet the minimum requirement for early childhood settings in Australia. This course trains you on a number of essential skills to become an early childhood worker/educator, including how to plan, implement and evaluate the content of educational early childhood programs to achieve specific goals, for examples to support healthy mealtimes for children and to foster individual developments. Importantly, you will learn which are legal and industrial requirements of a childcare educator and how to comply with these requirements at work. The study duration for this course is 12 months, fulltime basic.
- Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care:
This Diploma program is ideal for those who already have work experience in early childhood education and care and wish to become a group leader or a childcare centre manager. This course will train you on management skills to oversee and manage the operation of a room or of a childcare centre. In particular, Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care will equip you with the skills and practical knowledge to design and implement early childhood education programs, based on the understanding of emotional, physical, cognitive and social needs of young children. The study duration for this course is normally 18 months.
Notably, the majority of international students choose a training package that includes both Certificate III and Diploma of ECEC. This package provides a comprehensive set of necessary knowledge and skills for various career options post-graduation. The graduates can either become a ECEC worker, educator, group leader or childcare centre manager. The duration of this package is 2 years, which will help international students fulfill the qualification requirements to apply for a 485 visa.
What do you learn in an Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) course?
ECEC is a preparatory course to train professionals to teach infants and children aged from 0 to 5 years old. The contents of the course include:
- Developing educational guidance and learning plans
- Understanding how to care for children and how to promote their development
- Learning about the education industry
- Helping infant development through creative learning
- Building good relationships with child’s parents
- First aid for unexpected events that can occur in children; emergency response in unexpected situations
- Children’s grade evaluation
What are entry requirements for international students to study Early Childhood Education and Care courses?
You are most likely to satisfy entry requirements to study Early Childhood Education and Care courses. With Certificate III, all you need is completing Year 10 or equivalent. For Diploma of ECEC, completing Year 12 or equivalent is required.
For international students, you need to prove your English proficiency to study and work in Australia. Most schools require IELTS overall score of 5.5 with no sub-band below 5.0. If you do not have the English score required, the English pathway program is an option for you. Many schools offer English programs together with ECEC courses. If you pass these English programs, you will be eligible for studying ECEC courses.
How much does it cost to study ECEC in Australia?
Studying ECEC is very affordable, but the graduates will have a high chance of getting a fulltime job. The tuition fees vary depending on schools but generally speaking, for two years Certificate III + Diploma study, the tuition Fees range from $12,500 to $30,000. The tuition fees can also be paid by instalments.
To know more about school options and fees, simply contact us!
What is the Permanent Residency (PR) pathway after completing ECEC courses?
After completing the two-year ECEC program, you can obtain a graduation visa (Temporary Graduate Visa subclass 485-Graduate stream). To apply for a 485 visa, apart from two-year study in Australia, another key requirement you must meet is English capacity. You must obtain overall IELTS 6.0 (no band score under 5.0) or PTE 50 (no band score under 36). Provisional Skills Assessment is no longer required until the further notice from the Australian Government.
While holding a 485 visa, you will have time to fulfill essential requirements and apply for other visas to stay further and permanently in Australia. Here are some visa examples available for a Childcare centre manager and Childcare group leader.
Subclass 189: Skilled Independent visa
Subclass 190: Skilled Nominated visa
Subclass 482: Temporary Skill Shortage (subclass 482) – Medium Term Stream
Subclass 494: Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa
Subclass 491: Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) visa
Please note that to apply for these visas under the MLTSSL list, the occupation must be a Child Care Centre Manager which requires you to have at least 3 years of experience in this role, or you must be a Group Leader which requires you to have at least 1 year work experience after graduation.
Fortunately, however, there are some other visa options designed for specific regions which is called Designated Area Migration Agreements (DAMA). This is an area accredited by the Australian Government for the main purposes of overall population growth and economic revitalisation. If you are early childhood workers, you still have a chance to get 494 or 482 visas via DAMA scheme.
There are many different conditions and requirements for a early childhood educator applying for permanent residency in Australia. If you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact a qualified SOL Edu counsellor and registered migration agent.
How to pass skill assessments for a childcare centre manager in Australia?
The key requirement for a Childcare Centre Manager to pass a skill assessment is to have at least three years full time (or part time equivalent) employment experience as a Childcare Centre Manager in a regulated early childhood education and care centre. The employment experience needs to have been completed after you were awarded your qualification. During this working time, the expected responsibilities that the Childcare Centre Manager has done include:
- develop and implement programs to enhance the physical, social, emotional and intellectual development of young children
- direct and supervise educators providing care and supervision for young children
- establish and maintain a safe and healthy service environment for children, staff and visitors
- facilitate compliance with relevant government requirements and standards
- work in partnership with parents and families to provide appropriate education and care for children
- maintain service records, operational budgets and accounts
- recruit staff and coordinate professional development.
To meet the work requirement, applicants will need to provide evidence of at least six months full time (or part time equivalent) work experience in the past three years.
How to pass skill assessments for a childcare group leader in Australia?
For childcare workers, only group leaders are eligible for PR skill assessment. A Child Care Group Leader is required to provide evidence for one-year full time (or part time equivalent) employment experience in a regulated early childhood education and care service. The employment experience needs to have been completed after you were awarded your qualification. During this employment period, the group leader needs to fulfil certain responsibilities, including:
- provide education and care for babies, toddlers and children
- lead the preparation of materials and equipment to support children’s learning and development
- provide experiences to support children’s play and learning
- develop positive and respectful relationships with children
- ensure the health and safety of children
- support and supervise the daily routines of children
- support the inclusion of all children
- support children to develop cooperative behaviour.
The same as the case for Childcare centre manager, a Child Care Group Leader also needs to provide evidence of at least six months full time (or part time equivalent) work experience in the past three years.
Is early childhood education and care in demand in Australia?
Early Childhood education and Care is one of the most in-demand occupations in Australia. From June to August 2022, an average of 4549 job advertisements were posted each month for Early childhood educator positions, making the job market for Early childhood educators ranked at 5th in the list of top 20 in-demand jobs in Australia.
How much can a ECEC graduate earn in Australia?
The earning depends on what position you are working at. If you are a childcare educator/worker at entry level positions, you can earn 53,586 per year but the most experienced one can make up 81,050 annually. Childcare centre managers can earn higher with 60,500 for the start levels and 93,000 per year for the experienced levels.
What is the difference between early childhood teacher and educator?
Early childhood educators are professionals who have completed a Certificate III and/or Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care. Their main responsibilities are to educate and care for children aged from 0 to 5 years old.
Early childhood teachers are degree-qualified teachers with either a Bachelor or Master of Early Childhood Education. Their main responsibility is teaching and educating children aged from 3 to 5 years old.
What qualifications do I need to be a childcare worker in Australia?
To become a childcare worker/educator, you only need to finish Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care. However, as an international student, if you want to work and migrate to Australia, you need to have at least completed Cert III and Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care. The study duration of this package is two years, which ensures you meet the study time requirements to stay longer in Australia after graduation. To work with children, you may be also required to have “a working with children check”.
Can early childhood educators get Permanent Residency (PR) in Australia?
Yes, they can but difficult. Early childhood educator is not on the skilled occupation list for migration. There are only two ways that early childhood worker/educators can apply for a PR. The first way is they need to make a progress in their career to become a group leader or childcare centre manager, and accumulate adequate experience (1 year with group leader and 3 years with childcare centre manager). After that, they can apply for skill assessments and 189, 190, 491 and 494 visas. The second way is they can apply for regional Australia visas via DAMA scheme.
Contact SOL Edu and Migration today to explore permanent residency options for an early childhood educator in Australia.