Starting a new career (or changing careers later in life) can be exciting, scary, motivating, and thrilling… all rolled into one!
There’s a lot to take in and much to think about, including the right qualification you need to gain.
Australian childcare statistics and facts
Before we dive into the steps required to begin a successful and rewarding career in childcare, let’s take a look at some important statistics that help illustrate the rapid growth of the booming childcare industry.
Some recent statistics from a variety of sources are below.
Childcare statistics – Australia
- Of the 3.8 million children in Australia aged between 0 and 12, 1.8 million (48%) attended some form of childcare (ABS, June 2014)
- The proportion of children using before and/or after school care has risen from 6% in 1996 to 12% in 2005 (ABS, 2007)
- The most popular form of childcare in Australia is long day care, followed by Outside School Hours Care (OSHC), and family day care (ABS, 2011)
- There are around 6700 childcare centres in Australia (The Australian, 2016)
The rapid growth of the childcare industry is happening right before our very eyes: waiting lists are expanding and demand is rising!
Your personality and passions
Before we get into the industry requirements needed to work in childcare, you must first think about the reasons you want to work with children and in childcare.
Your personality and passions play a vital role in determining whether childcare is right for you!
How would you answer the following questions?
- Do you love children?
- Would you prefer an active job rather than a static desk job?
- Do you want to be challenged?
- Are you passionate about childhood growth and development?
- Are you patient, friendly, positive, and approachable?
If you’ve answered yes to the above questions, it sounds like you’ve got the passion – and the right attitude – to have a successful career in childcare!
Starting your career in childcare: minimum qualifications required
Now that you’ve determined you’ve got the heart for childcare, it’s time to get the right education.
You are likely familiar with the two most popular childcare courses and qualifications in Australia. They are:
Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care
Since January 2014, the Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care has been the industry standard to work in childcare. That means to work in childcare, you will have achieved at minimum Certificate III or working towards achieving it.
Learn more about the Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care course here.
Diploma in Early Childhood Education and Care
In the past, you had to complete your Certificate III before you could enrol in the Diploma. Now, there is a little more flexibility: depending on your circumstances and goals, you can choose to enrol in either the Certificate III or the Diploma.
From January 2014, it is now mandatory that half of all staff in a childcare centre have (or be working towards) their Diploma qualification.
Excel in your childhood career with the Diploma in Early Childhood Education and Care.
Study in a way that suits YOUR lifestyle
At Southern Solutions, you have the choice of full-time or part-time study, which means no matter your current situation, you can start working towards your qualifications sooner rather than later!
We also offer on-site and online training: distance is no longer a problem, no matter where you’re located in Australia.
What sort of responsibilities will I have in childcare?
Now that you’re a more familiar with the qualifications required to successfully enter the childcare industry, we’ll take a look at some of the most common day-to-day requirements that you’ll likely encounter as you complete the placement component of your studies.
Of course, in an industry like childcare, no two days will ever be alike, but you should expect to experience many of the following on a regular basis:
- Supervise the safety of children in your care
- Greet children and parents when they arrive
- Promote hygiene and safety at all times
- Plan and run a variety of recreational and physical activities
- Engage in educational games, puzzles, and pastimes
- Monitor and resolve conflicts
- Read books and stories to children
- Help children safely enjoy their food during snack and meal times
- Prepare children for rest time and provide constant supervision as they sleep
- Engage in professional communication with parents
Ready to start your childcare career?
Early childhood educators have a tremendously important role in a child’s life, laying the foundation for solid social skills as well as cognitive, emotional, and behavioural skills that will stay with children for the rest of their lives!
If you’re ready to take the next step towards a fulfilling and joyful career in childcare, enrol in one of Southern Solutions’ education and childcare courses. Click here to view a list of all current childcare vacancies across Australia.