Wednesday, March 19, 2008

NSW Childcare Qualification Requirements.

Although jobs ARE difficult to come by, I have found out that childcare is an industry which is severely lacking in qualified staff in NSW.

My research & reflection has shown that if a candidate has a Bachelors degree (preferably from Australia, of course!), they are more likely to be hired for casual jobs and have more shifts in NSW particularly. Other factors include the fact that you get along with other staff in the centre will ensure that the centre will always call you to return there for work.

That was the case that happened yesterday when I emailed in my BECH transcripts to the childcare staffing agencies. One of the agents immediately called me up to inform me that I would be promoted to Early Childhood Teacher for my work (if that turns up that is). I was like, woah! The pay rate for ECT casuals is about AUD30/hour before tax + Superannuation.

To be a group leader in NSW, the employee needs only to have studied up to a Diploma in Childhood Services/Studies, and the Director an Advanced Diploma. Compare this to Queensland, where employees need a higher qualification (by one level) in order to be employed in that position. Of course, if one has a BECH, they can work in either positions, but they may not as the pay commensurates with the position held!

I am not sure why staff in the childcare centres seem to be lacking degree or diploma qualified staff, which is not the case for Toowoomba, where I undertook my studies. Almost everyone at my institution seemed to be undertaking post-graduate studies and finish off with a Masters or Graduate Diploma.

That was the case I went to work in my past three casual shifts. The staff had a tendency to ask, "so, have you done your Cert III or Diploma yet?". It was such that I found difficulty in trying to find the most diplomatic answer to that question.

To state, the case is the opposite in QLD, where not many will be caught with less than a degree, or may it was the circle of my acquaintances? Who knows.

My casual work has been going fairly great so far. I took one week off to prepare for my IELTS (I am not sure how well I will do for that, but I sure pray it would be good!). I've been working almost the past three days I just hope to get paid fairly okay now!!

Work as a casual is great as the advantages include that I get paid higher, and the fact that one gets to meet different staff at each centre. Perhaps after the novelty of the idea has passed, I may consider finding a more permanent job.

However, the fact that one is a casual means that one has to always be on their best behaviour, and put up their best feet forward to guarantee that they will continue to be called back to that same centre all the time. I was working at this centre on Monday, and got called to work again today & am booked in for Thursday as well.

Perhaps the centre liked me? Who knows. All I know is that in every situation, as the employee, you have to know what to do at all times, and just volunteer to help out or initiate help if you see it without being told. That goes for every job as well.

We'll see how next week goes.

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