Early childhood workers/educators look after young children in various settings (including child care centres, hospitals and educational centres) to manage their behaviour and guide their educational and recreational activities.

Where childcare worker/early childhood educators are employed

Early childhood educators work in a range of settings including private, government and community-based childcare centres, kindergartens, crèches, hospitals, women's shelters and neighborhood houses.


Full-time childcare workers in South Australia generally earn between $600 and $799 per week.

Graph of pay scale for Childcare worker

Job prospects

In 2011 there were 1,945 people employed full-time as childcare workers in South Australia, compared with 1,414 in 2006.

How to become one

Early childhood educators are required to complete a Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification in early childhood education and care or school age education and care. You can also become an early childhood educator through a traineeship in children's services, children's services (outside school hours care), early childhood education and care, or school age education and care. Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require year 10. For more information see traineeships. Ask your career adviser about the possibility of starting this training at school.

See courses related to this occupation.

Licensing or Registration requirements

In South Australia there are no registration requirements to work as a child care worker.

There are no licensing requirements, however, there are industry standards. You must have a minimum certificate III or diploma level qualification to work in the childcare sector. In addition, you must hold a current Senior First Aid certificate, Child Safe Environments accreditation and the relevant criminal history and/or police clearance.

Recognition of qualifications and skills obtained outside Australia

If you completed your qualification(s) overseas, they must be assessed as equivalent to a minimum of an Australian certificate III. There are currently two recognition pathways available:

  • Apply to the Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) for determination of equivalent qualifications. ACECQA can provide a formal assessment of the overseas qualification against the Australian Qualifications Framework and whether it is comparable, and determine which level the individual can work at under the National Quality Framework (NQF).  
  • Apply to a Registered Training Organisation for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL), and full recognition or gap training will be offered to meet the relevant Australian Qualification level sought.

As many overseas trained child care educators are required to undertake gap training to meet the industry qualification standards it is recommended that you seek advice on recognition pathways.

For information about assessment of overseas qualifications, and looking for work in Australia visit Recognition of overseas qualifications or contact Skilled Arrival Services on 08 8303 2420 or email

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Career information has been sourced from government publications, see data sources for more information.

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