Demand for early learning professionals expected to remain strong
The Sector > Practice > Long Day Care > Demand for early learning professionals expected to remain strong as LDC staff waivers hit new high

Demand for early learning professionals expected to remain strong as LDC staff waivers hit new high

by Jason Roberts

February 05, 2023
Kindergarten child care jobs educators

The percentage of long day care (LDC) services with staffing waivers in place has jumped to a new record level of 16.4 per cent according to the latest Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) NQF Snapshot


The Snapshot, which is released quarterly, provides data from across the early childhood education and care (ECEC) sector including waiver information, with the most recent release once again highlighting that the workforce shortage related challenges being experienced across the ECEC sector, particularly in LDC, are ongoing. 


This information is of particular relevance to educators and teachers, both in the sector and looking to join the sector, and also for ECEC employers as they consider their individual or organisation’s current circumstances and plan for the future. 


As it stands around 16.4 per cent of the 8,681 LDC services across Australia have applied for, and received a staffing waiver. A staffing waiver allows a service to operate without the mandated qualified staff members required by the National Regulations


All services with a waiver


The proportion of total services across the four different ECEC settings (LDC, Family Day Care, Outside School Hours Care and preschools) which have waivers in place was 9.3 per cent in December, the same as the prior period, and still at record levels. 


Queensland and Western Australia hardest hit by shortages 


The extreme LDC educator and teacher shortages are most evident in Queensland and Western Australia which reported 28.3 per cent and 24.1 per cent of services with waivers respectively. 



Victoria appears to be the stand out case regarding the lowest levels of waivers but anecdotally pressures on LDC services to find team members to staff rosters across the state are still intense with many owners, operators, managers and educators reporting challenges in this area. 


As we start 2023 it is clear that the tight workforce environment is likely to proceed for the foreseeable future with data highlighting the strong demand for educators, the opportunities this can bring for ECEC candidates, and the ongoing challenges for ECEC providers desperately looking to fill vacancies. 


To read the latest snapshot visit the ACECQA website here.

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