Two ECEC qualifications added to Victoria’s Free TAFE course list for 2020

by Freya Lucas

November 07

The Victorian Government have issued a callout, hoping to see an increase of people choosing to study early childhood education and care (ECEC) in 2020. To support the initiative, two early childhood qualifications will be added to the Free TAFE course list in 2020

 

The announcement was made by Victoria’s Minister for Training and Skills and Higher Education Gayle Tierney, and Member for Northern Victoria Mark Gepp, as they visited Berrimba Childcare Centre in Echuca to encourage locals to enrol in childcare courses. 

 

Adding the courses to the Free TAFE list will support the rollout of universal three-year-old Kinder in Victoria in 2020 and the years beyond. The Victorian Government has invested $28.5 million in the Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care and Diploma of ECEC making them tuition fee-free for eligible students in 2020. 

 

The introduction of universal access to three-year-old kinder is expected to create more than 6,000 new early childhood education jobs by 2029. 

 

Ms Tierney urged locals to take advantage of the opportunity, saying “for anyone who has considered working in kinders or childcare, this is the perfect time to enrol in early childhood education at TAFE, ahead of universal three-year-old Kinder being rolled out in Echuca in 2021.”

 

Mr Gepp said the availability of free TAFE was beneficial not only for the ECEC sector, but also for broader economic growth in Victoria, noting that “being able to study at a local TAFE — without tuition fees — is helping more Victorians gain the skills for local jobs. It means locals can support the Echuca economy and community, making it easier to stay in the region.” 

 

Whilst in the region Ms Tierney also visited BKI’s Echuca campus to meet with free TAFE students, as well as students taking part in the Aboriginal Workforce Development Initiative, which has seen the TAFE work with Njernda Aboriginal Corporation to provide training for local workers. 

 

State-wide data shows since January this year, 36,000 students have started free TAFE courses in the nine months to the end of September – a 90 per cent increase in commencements in these courses this time last year. 

 

Those wishing to learn more about the opportunities available under the free TAFE initiative are invited to view the Skills website, here

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