With such demand for childcare course graduates, it is a great time to consider a career in early childhood due to the strong growth of the early childhood sector in recent years. The early childhood education and care industry, is a large provider of education and care to young children in which educators have an opportunity to influence the learning and development of children at the most important stage of their lives – the early years (0-5 years).
Factors that have influenced this growth includes recent changes to educator to child ratios that require additional educators per child. An increase in the number of children attending children’s services due to a general increase in the demand for child care, makes early childhood one of the most in-demand professions.
Factors that have increased this demand may include:
- Dual income families and woman re-entering in the workforce
- A greater awareness of the benefits of an early childhood education
- An increase in the number of early childhood services
- An increase in the access and support for vulnerable children
- Funding for kindergarten programs
- Greater support and facilities for children with additional needs
- Higher quality early childhood education
- Increase in educator to child ratios
According to Job Outlook, an initiative of the Department of Employment that provides data in relation to trends and employment prospects for particular occupations; there are currently over 36,000 early childhood employees in early childhood services in Australia and over 9,000 in Queensland. The five years to November 2019, the number of job openings for early childhood educators is expected to average between 10,001 and 25,000. Job openings count both employment growth and turnover (defined as workers leaving their occupation for other employment or leaving the workforce).