Times are definitely changing with a record number of men studying childcare at TAFE SWSi in Campbelltown this year.
A total of 18 men are studying early childhood courses with the aim of securing a position in what is traditionally a female-dominated industry.
The number makes up a whopping 80 per cent increase in male students from last year to this year at the Campbelltown TAFE.
Relieving Children’s Education and Care head teacher Erin Williams said it was normally the case that very few men would be studying in the three courses on offer — Certificate 3 Early Childhood Education and Care, Diploma Early Childhood Education and Care and Certificate 3 Education Support.
“This is by far the largest group of male students that I have seen since teaching at TAFE SWSi in my 10 years,” she said.
“There’s an increase and it’s wonderful to see this change. It reflects society’s changing values about male educators.”
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, men make up just 4 per cent of workers in child care services.
But Ms Williams said there was an active change occurring which will see more men heading into the industry in the future.
“Males educators have a positive impact on children’s learning,” she said.
“Early education centre directors are advocating for male educators and educating families on the benefits and skills that male educators bring to the environment.”
Student Darren Moore said being a father is what inspired him to pursue a career in early childhood education.
“I developed an interest in working with children when my daughter attended preschool in 2014,” he said.
“I was a regular at helping out in the classroom and continued to assist children who were behind in their reading levels when my daughter started school in 2015.”
Fellow student Corie Borg said it was a love for children which encouraged him to sign up.
“I enjoy working with children and find it rewarding to see children’s accomplishments,” he said.
Semester two enrolments for child care and education courses at TAFE SWSi begin May 20. For details, visit swsi.edu.au or call 13 79 74.