Supporting the independent education community

Love your profession? Make it one you can afford to stay in


Love your profession?  Make it one you can afford to stay in


A new survey from industry super group HESTA underlines why it is important for early childhood teachers to join the IEU. The survey found that although many early childhood educators (the survey did not distinguish between teachers and educators) were happy with their employer, they were still considering leaving the profession due to low pay. 


Only by joining the union can you achieve improved rates of pay. Back in May the IEU achieved a pay rise of up to 10% for those on the modern award, following a long legal battle. The IEU is always fighting for a better deal on behalf of early education teachers. Join now.


Launched today, the HESTA State of the Sector 2021: Early Childhood Education and Care Workforce Insights report reveals the industry – already facing chronic workforce shortages – faces significant challenges attracting and retaining talent.


Almost one in five early childhood education and care (ECEC) professionals surveyed said they were considering leaving the industry within two years. Among the biggest issues were dissatisfaction with wages, feeling unappreciated by the community for their role as early educators, and a lack of opportunities for growth (promotion).


The research did find positive sentiment across a range of measures related to how ECEC professionals felt about their employers, with 87% saying they felt somewhat or strongly supported by their employers during COVID.


However, this didn’t flow through to a greater willingness to advocate for working in the sector. 


Although 42 percent of respondents said they’d strongly recommend working for their employer, 43% were strong detractors when it came to recommending a career in the industry. Less than a third of respondents said they would strongly recommend a career in the industry.


In a 2019 workforce report on the future of the ECEC workforce, the independent Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) forecasted the sector will need more than 39,000 extra educators by 2023 - a 20 percent increase in the workforce.


“When Australia faced the initial shock of COVID-19, early educators were there to support the push to protect our community. Now is the time to ensure a long-term, sustainably funded, early childhood education sector. But this funding must also look to lift low wages and improve conditions for those who are so vital to delivering these critical services,” HESTA CEO Debby Blakey said.



For the HESTA report, see: