Early Childhood Free TAFE Courses Get Underway

16 February 2020

More learners across Victoria will gain a rewarding career in early childhood education and care, thanks to the Andrews Labor Government.

Minister for Training and Skills and Higher Education Gayle Tierney today visited Holmesglen Institute’s Glen Waverley campus to officially launch the start of the Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care and Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care courses, which have been added to the Free TAFE course list from this year.

The Labor Government’s landmark Free TAFE initiative reduces the financial barrier for students wanting to train in courses that lead to jobs in demand from Victorian employers. These two courses will now be tuition-fee-free for eligible students, thanks to a $28.5 million investment from the Government.

Free TAFE has so far been an incredible success, with more than 39,000 students enrolling in Free TAFE courses by the end of November 2019.

The increased demand for qualified early childhood educators is due to the roll-out of the biggest reform in early childhood education in our state’s history, with the Labor Government’s $5 billion investment to provide universal Three-Year-Old Kinder over a decade.

The reform is expected to create more than 6,000 new early childhood teaching jobs, including 2,000 VET-qualified educators and 4,000 degree-qualified teachers by 2029.

Adding these courses to the Free TAFE list will ensure that all Victorian children have the qualified early childhood educators they need to access a high-quality kindergarten program.

Three-Year-Old Kindergarten is starting this year in six regional local government areas, expanding to 15 more in 2021 and it will be available statewide by 2022, giving children access to at least five hours of kindergarten per week, ensuring every child has a great start in life.

Since 2015, the Government has invested more than $1.3 billion to rebuild the state’s TAFE system and ensure students can get the skills they need for the jobs they want.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Training and Skills and Higher Education Gayle Tierney

“Having these courses added to the Free TAFE list will give more people the opportunity to take on a rewarding career educating and caring for our kids.”

“We’re investing almost $5 billion over the decade to deliver the biggest reform to early childhood education in Victoria’s history, giving three-year-olds an extra year of learning, playing and making friends.”

Quote attributable to Member for Mount Waverley Matt Fregon

“Students in Melbourne’s east will now have free and easy access to a rewarding career in early childhood education and care, giving our kids the best possible start in life.”

Reviewed 30 July 2020

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