Lauren Kelly had always wanted to work in ECEC and in 2021 she undertook the Pathway to a Traineeship program. During the program, she studied the basics of working in ECEC and undertook a two-week placement at one of Lady Gowrie’s education and care services in Hobart, Tasmania.
Her placement was in the babies room with 12 to 18-month-olds where she got hands-on learning. When she finished the program, she was interviewed for a traineeship, which she secured. Lauren went on to undertake her Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care part time.
‘I had always wanted to work in child care because both my nans had been teachers. But I’d never had the opportunity. I have been loving all of it. The relationships you build in this centre with the children and the staff are so strong and beautiful’, Lauren said.
The opportunity proved such a hit with multiple students that 80% of participants pursued a career in ECEC – and experts in the field want to bottle its success.
The program’s participants were referred from Workforce Australia employment service provider, Workskills Tasmania.
Generally, you need a Certificate III or a Diploma in ECEC to become an educator, and a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education to become an early childhood teacher.
Part of the pathway program’s success was that it offered wrap-around support to participants:
- creating a psychologically safe space for the learners
- providing them with a study coach
- giving them real-life work experience
- connecting them with the breadth of knowledge of educator colleagues
- creating a path for them to a traineeship and ongoing work.