ECEC is the place to be, TAFE NSW new grad says, outlining rich rewards

by Freya Lucas

February 12, 2020

After finishing highschool Sara Sheekey wasn’t sure about her next steps. After a period of research and reflection, she decided to accept a traineeship at SDN Lady McKell Children’s Education and Care Centre in Goulburn, and hasn’t looked back since. 


For others in a similar position, Ms Sheekey said the sector is “booming” and that early childhood education and care (ECEC) is a “richly rewarding” career where jobs are plentiful.


The TAFE NSW Jobs of the Future report predicted the role of ‘childcare worker’ would be among the highest job growth areas in the Goulburn region over the next two years, a TAFE NSW spokesperson said. 


To begin her career in early childhood, Ms Sheekey studied a Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care at TAFE NSW Goulburn. This ignited her passion for working with children and teaching and after graduating she increased her qualifications completing a diploma, before enrolling in a degree.


“I wanted to be the best I could be, so I enrolled in a TAFE NSW Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care so that I had the skill-set I needed to get ahead in my career,” she said.


Undertaking her qualification and training gave her confidence in working with children and an understanding of how children learn, as well as how the sector works.


SDN Lady McKell Children’s Education and Care Centre Director, Anna Lamarra said she had noticed growth in the sector and a demand for services in recent years. “As one of the region’s largest centres, we have grown from employing two trainees to four trainees per year,” she said.


“We have a good training and career path and 20 staff are trained through TAFE NSW. I started here as a trainee, and two of our Early Childhood Educators started as trainees and have progressed in their careers.”


More information about TAFE NSW may be found on their website, or by phoning 131 601.