CHILD'S PLAY: A unique partnership between Greater Hume Council and TAFE NSW aims to help address the childcare worker shortage in the region.
Locals interested in a career in the booming childcare sector are being offered an opportunity to “earn and learn” at the same time, thanks to a unique scholarship program offered by Greater Hume Council and TAFE NSW.
Over the past 18 months, Greater Hume Council has responded to community demand by taking over operations of long day care services in Walla Walla, Henty and Holbrook but is now faced with a staffing shortage.
The childcare sector, particularly in regional areas, has long grappled with a skills shortage, with the TAFE NSW Jobs of the Future report finding “early childhood educator” would be one of the fastest growing professions in the Murray region between 2018 and 2021.
In partnership with TAFE NSW, Greater Hume Council has launched five new scholarships to locals, allowing recipients to work on the job while receiving free tuition for a Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care through TAFE NSW.
To qualify, locals must enrol in the upcoming Introduction to Early Childhood Education short course, to commence at Holbrook on 20 August.
From that course, five scholarship recipients will be selected.
“It’s a great opportunity at a time when people have lost jobs and being able to study and work locally is becoming more attractive,” Greater Hume Council Mayor Cr Heather Wilton.
“Each scholarship recipient gets the cost of their course paid for by Greater Hume Council. Scholarship recipients are also rewarded with opportunities for paid work placement as an integral part of the program.”
Cr Wilton said successful applicants would then have the option to work in one of the centres part-time or full-time.
TAFE NSW Early Childhood Team Leader Justine Poidevin encouraged locals to consider applying for the scholarship.
“All of our early childhood teachers have worked extensively, or are currently working, in the sector and the course is extremely hands-on and practical,” Ms Poidevin said.
“With the jobs market becoming increasingly uncertain, this is a wonderful opportunity to get a running start into an industry where jobs are plentiful and the personal rewards of the work rich.
For information on how to apply for a scholarship or to enrol in the Introduction to Early Childhood Education, contact Greater Hume Council on 6036 0100 or TAFE NSW on 13 16 01.
Media contact: Daniel Johns, TAFE NSW Media and Communications – Business Partner, 6938 1441, mobile 0477 722 428.