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The NSW Government will spend $281.6 million over the course of four years on a set of initiatives designed to increase the number of employees working in the early childhood education and care industry, keep on board current teachers and educators, and give current employees more opportunities to advance their careers.

With the joint commitment to overhaul early education in NSW and Victoria, the most significant issue that the sector currently faces is the lack of Early Childhood Educators.

In response to the Royal Commission regarding institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, The Teacher Accreditation Act 2004 has been amended. From now on the New South Wales Education Standards Authority (NESA) will be making decisions about teacher accreditation at all levels, including the early childhood sector.

The early education sector is struggling to find enough staff due to COVID, influenza and burnout. With services failing to achieve educator-to-child ratios due to colder weather, the relaxation of mask rules for staff, and an increase in colds and flu.

The NSW and Commonwealth governments are providing fee-free part and full qualification courses for job searchers and existing workers in the early childhood education and care sector under the NSW JobTrainer programme. JobTrainer provides fee-free training that is fully financed by the NSW and Commonwealth governments.

The going wage for a nanny in Sydney, according to nanny agencies and the Find a Babysitter website, is between $25 and $40 per hour, based on experience and qualifications. Casual childcare in the evening might cost up to $45 per hour. While the third year of a Certificate 3 certification, the award wage for a childcare worker is $25.26 per hour.

According to the most recent job figures, the need for childcare employees is at an all-time high. More than 3000 Educators are required in Sydney alone, with a total of 16,000 required across the country. In addition to the shortage, 37% of workers intend to leave the industry, many of whom are dissatisfied with their salary and working conditions, a sentiment compounded by the pandemic.

The National Children’s Education and Care Workforce Strategy (2022-2031) has been developed to support the recruitment, retention, sustainability and quality of the sector workforce.

For Victoria Educators, if you hold a diploma in early childhood education, you can complete this specialised Bachelor of Early Childhood Teaching in just two years, graduating ready to work as an early childhood teacher. The course complements our three-year Bachelor of Early Childhood Education, which caters to applicants without a diploma in the discipline.

The scholarships provide financial assistance to scholars who intend to be or who are employed in NSW early childhood education services. Scholarships of up to $20,000 each will be offered to those commencing or completing a bachelor-level early childhood teaching degree. This degree can be studied at universities or other vocational education and training providers (e.g. TAFE).

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