Primary and secondary teachers with Cert III to count as ECTs, ACECQA says

Primary and secondary teachers with Cert III to count as ECTs, ACECQA says

by Freya Lucas

December 07, 2021

The Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) has extended and amended transitional measures relating to recognition as an ‘equivalent early childhood teacher’ until the end of 2023. 

 

Effective 1 January 2022, a person who holds ALL of the following will be recognised as equivalent to an early childhood teacher:

 

  • a primary or secondary teaching qualification;
  • teacher registration in Australia (called ‘accreditation’ in New South Wales); and, 
  • an ACECQA approved certificate III level (or higher) early childhood education and care qualification.

 

After the end of 2023, this transitional measure is scheduled to cease, however individuals who have obtained this combination of qualifications before the end of 2023 will continue to be recognised under this provision.

 

The amendment follows measures begun by ACECQA in September 2013, when it was determined that a person who holds ALL of the following will be recognised as equivalent to an early childhood teacher:

 

  • a primary teaching qualification that includes at least a focus on children aged 5 to 8 years old (e.g. a qualification with a focus on children aged 3 to 8 or 5 to 12);
  • teacher registration in Australia (called ‘accreditation’ in New South Wales); and, 
  • an ACECQA approved diploma level (or higher) early childhood education and care qualification.

 

That transitional measure was most recently reviewed by the ACECQA Board in June 2021. The ACECQA Board’s deliberations focussed on the following:

 

  • Achieving a balance between the ongoing goal of building a highly skilled workforce while recognising persistent and increasingly urgent issues with the attraction, supply and retention of early childhood teachers (particularly in regional and remote areas);
  • The ongoing impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic, including the restrictions on skilled migration for overseas trained early childhood teachers;
  • The recent changes to the national children’s education and care training package, including the inclusion of specific skills and knowledge, such as early childhood theorists, developmental milestones and play based pedagogy, in the new Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care; and, 
  • The extension of Regulation 242 (‘Persons taken to be early childhood teachers’) of the Education and Care Services National Regulations in most jurisdictions until the end of 2023.

 

Based on these deliberations, the ACECQA Board decided to extend and amend its transitional measure until the end of 2023.

 

Next steps for registered/accredited primary or secondary school teachers

 

Until 31 December 2021, a registered primary school teacher who successfully completes a diploma level (or higher) early childhood education and care qualification from ACECQA’s list of approved qualifications will meet the qualification requirements for an early childhood teacher.

 

From 1 January 2022, a registered primary or secondary school teacher who successfully completes a certificate III level (or higher) early childhood education and care qualification from ACECQA’s list of approved qualifications will meet the qualification requirements for an early childhood teacher.

 

Individuals will not need to apply to ACECQA once they achieve a qualification on the list of approved qualifications as, in combination with their primary or secondary teaching qualification and Australian teacher registration, they will automatically be considered to meet the qualification requirements for an equivalent early childhood teacher. 

 

Registered/accredited primary or secondary school teachers may be able to be “taken to be an early childhood teacher” upon starting their approved early childhood education and care qualification. Find more information about the “actively working towards” provision and Regulation 242.

 

Alternatively, as a registered primary or secondary school teacher individuals may be able to be recognised as a ‘suitably qualified person’. Find more information about “recognition as a suitably qualified person”.

 

Those without teacher registration/accreditation will need to obtain provisional or full teacher registration/accreditation to meet the requirements of an equivalent early childhood teacher under Regulation 137(3).

 

A list of teacher registration/accreditation bodies in each state or territory can be found on the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership website.

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