Wednesday, April 30, 2008

QLD Australia: Requirements for Montessori teachers

As my avid readers would know by now, every state in Australia has "almost" different set of requirements to work in the education industry.

These are the requirements for working in Montessori centres and schools in Queensland, Australia as per the Queensland Montessori Association (QMA). As said before, holding a Montessori diploma does not entitle the candidate to "teach" in a Montessori centre in the context of Australia. You still need to have a tertiary qualification (3 or 4- year teaching degree on top of it).

Take note that although these are the requirements set out in Queensland, the criterias are almost similar across the states in Australia. Also particularly important to know that across the states, candidates who are registered as a teacher with the individual state's College of Teaching are normally exempt from possessing a Blue Card / Working With Children Check (WWCC).

A WWCC is a compulsory regulation for all individuals who have long-term direct contact with children across all settings, whether it be in a commercial or a voluntary basis. Each state has its own regulations of obtaining a WWCC, so be sure to check out beforehand if you intend to travel & work inter-state and save you the trouble of how to obtain it.

To work in a Montessori School as a Teacher you need
  • Registration with the Queensland College of Teaching
  • Recognised teaching degree - Bachelor of Education for primary grades, or Bachelor of Early Childhood Education for Cycle 1
  • Montessori qualification
  • Current senior First Aid and CPR qualifications

To work in a Montessori Primary School as an Assistant you need

  • Current Blue Card
  • Previous experience in an educational setting
  • Montessori credentials
  • Current senior First Aid and CPR qualifications

To work in a Montessori Creche or Kindergarten as a Teacher you need

  • Montessori Diploma
  • Minimum Bachelor of Teaching (early childhood), preferred Bachelor of Education (early childhood)
  • Queensland College of Teachers (QTC) registration
  • Current senior First Aid and CPR qualifications

To work in a Montessori Creche or Kindergarten as an Assistant you need

  • Montessori qualification
  • Certificate 111 Diploma in Community Services (Children’s Services)
  • Current senior First Aid and CPR qualifications
  • Current Blue Card

To work in a Montessori Long Day Care Centre as a Director you need

  • Bachelor of Teaching (Early Childhood), or Bachelor of Early Childhood, or Advanced Diploma in Children’s Services
  • Registration with the Queensland College of Teaching (for teachers), or Current Blue Card (for Group Leaders)
  • Montessori credentials
  • Current senior First Aid and CPR qualifications.

To work in a Montessori Long Day Care Centre as a Group Leader / Teacher you need:

  • Bachelor of Teaching (Early Childhood), or Bachelor of Early Childhood, or Certificate 111 Diploma in Community Services (Children’s Services)
  • Registration with the Queensland College of Teaching, or Current Blue Card.
  • Montessori credentials
  • Current senior First Aid and CPR qualifications

To work in a Montessori Long Day Care Centre as an Assistant you need:

  • Certificate 111 Diploma in Community Services (Children’s Services)
  • Current Blue Card
  • Current senior First Aid and CPR qualifications


kinder/caring said...

I worry that too many early years environments label themselves as "Montessori" without proper training and understanding of the theory behind this approach to learning. I think that daycares seek to capitalize on the Montessori popularity with parents, and push academic tasks over true Montessori child-led exploration.

CheaYee said...

When I was in NSW,

I was sent to this school which was supposedly "Montessori" from it's name--

but reality is so far from the truth...

It's really funny that Australians will say something like, "Oh we don't believe in Montessori-- it's too structured-- blah blah blah"

and Malaysians will say that "oh, it's too much play-- and children won't learn anything" to the same thing.

Anyways, it was only one or two teachers in that school which was fully Montessori trained. The rest were just riding on the school's name, or those two teachers who were trained to run the business.

Most of them do not believe in the Montessori methodology, nor know what it meant or is.

kinder/caring said...

Thank you for this perspective. As a parent and early years teacher I try and be really aware of what is going on at my daughter's Montessori school so that I can be on top of the program.

Shirin said...

Hi Chea Yee,
I was searching 'Montessori Diploma' and came across your blog. I didn't take Bachelor of Education in Uni, I wished I had, but somehow I was confused then and ended up in Mass Communication. Just like to ask you for some advice, I would like to be a teacher, which qualification would be suitable. Thanks.

CheaYee said...

Hi Shirin,

you didn't tell me where you are from, and which age group you would you like to teach?


Shirin said...

I'm Malaysian currently living in Malaysia and have applied for Australian PR. This is looking ahead and hopefully able to teach in Australia.

Currently I'm taking up Diploma on Montessori and teaching at a Montessori Pre-school.

I would like to be teaching Pre-school/Kindergarten or Lower Primary.

Tahira said...

Hi,I am from Pakistan, found your blog very interesting and informative. Wanted to inquire about job possibilities in Australia. I have done bachelors in commerce then did Montessori diploma from AMI and have been working as a directress/ coordinator in Montessori for more then a decade. Want to migrate to Australia and want to know what is my chances of getting a good job in Sydney.Do I need to take up any courses there to qualify the state requirement. Hope to hear from you soon. Thanks

CheaYee said...

in australia, if u have a montessori diploma, u still need to do a bridging course with the local TAFE.
It could be as little as 5 to 15 units.

The bridging course means, you will do the Diploma course using ur Montessori diploma as a base and Tafe will look at how many similar subjects you have done previously.
Unfortunately in Australia, the Montessori diploma is not exactly recognised as a certificate on its own without a local recognised cert.

you can still find work at the local childcare, as something is better than none. Another way to know if your certificate is recognised is to go to the local state Dept of Childcare or something similar. You can find the link for childcare certificates which are recognised in that state.
If ur cert is stated then u dont have to do any other bridging courses.

What happens is that if you send ur cert in to the local state Dept for assessment, they will tell you if it is recognised and will also send you a letter to tell you what they have done. keep this letter they send properly and safely and bring it along with your interviews.

CheaYee said...

in australia, if u have a Diploma recognised by the local state Dept, you are qualified to manage the childcare the centre.

however, you need to have min 3 year degree qualified teacher for evrty 29 children. In my school where i used to work in Sydney, there was always two, meaning my principal (and owner) and me.

Wages for 3 yr trained teachers start from abt aud 23 dollars depending on how many years trained, and how many years worked. For this, please refer to the wages rate on the local Human Resource website for childcare staff, or 3 yr trained teachers.
How high your wages will be is also dependent on whehter your employer wants to pay you the minimum as allowed, or trying to retain you from moving to another centre (you must be really fantastically good teacher)for the employer to do that.

CheaYee said...

my previous colleague is from India. She only has her Montessori diploma, but the principal took her in as she needed trained staff in a montessori centre.
She has been trying to complete her local Diploma, but never finds the time.. Lol.

The principal ended up retaining her and paying her even more as she was good in her work.

Unknown said...

Ling Said....
My sister in law graduated in Commerce and diploma in Montessori.

She has been running her own kindergarden in Malaysia for the past 10 years.

Now we are looking at investing in Australia Montessori child care.

Will she be qualified to be the director to run the center?

Or she still has to do a Bachelor of Early Childhood or Education?

Will her experiences be acceptable by the Australia Government?

CheaYee said...

As a director, you need to have a DIPLOMA in childhood services, or something similar from TAFE or something which is accredited as similar.

She can do that with the local ACECQA, and I think its free if its just for work purposes and not
migration purposes.

Is she an Australian PR? if she is not, then she will have to pay quite a sum to do a Diploma course at TAFE. She can also apply for Recognition of PRior learning for exemptions, but normally Diploma in Montessori is not really recognised in Australia, though they do recognise it for its units into the Diploma of Childhood Services/similar.

Don't ask me why, but thats the case as it is in Australia.

The Bachelor of Early Childhood/Teaching is a three year program, and BED is a 4 year program.

The BECH allows you to work in childcare centres as an Early Childhood Teacher, while the BED is if you want to work in both childcare centres (as ECT) and public schools.

the local regulations now wants to have at least one ECT for every 29 children, or in those numbers.You dont need a BECH to be the owner/director, but you need the minimum recognised Diploma to be a Director AND certain number of years in local experience.

For that you need to read up/check on ACECQA as well.

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