Supports for early career early childhood teachers

Supports for early career early childhood teachers

The department is continuing to provide a range of support for early childhood teachers in 2022, designed to help you develop your practice and build your professional identity. We encourage you to visit this page regularly to discover and sign up for new programs as they are released.

Innovation grants to support early-career teacher retention (innovation grants)

Innovation Grants from $5,000 up to $30,000 were advertised in mid-2021 for initiatives and/or projects designed to improve the retention of early childhood teachers (ECTs) in the first five years of their careers.

About the innovation grants

The Innovation Grants will provide funding from $5,000 up to $30,000 to approved early childhood education and care services operating in Victoria that deliver a Victorian funded kindergarten program.

Grants will be considered for initiatives that:

  • improve ECT retention in the workforce (in the first five years of their careers)
  • increase the capacity of the early childhood sector to respond to workforce retention issues
  • increase sector engagement and partnerships in the development of workforce solutions

Ground rounds

2021 applications are now closed.

The 2022 funding round has not yet been finalised.

Any queries about Innovation Grants can be directed to early.years.workforce.grants@education.vic.gov.au

Career supports for ECTs in their first five years of teaching

From 2021, we are providing an initiative aimed at ECTs in the first five years of their teaching career. 

Free supports available include (criteria has expanded, please check below if you are now eligible):

  1. For first-year teachers, ‘funding by exception’ (FBE) and transitional funding educators who are upskilling while also teaching a kindergarten program - access to a minimum of five hours of individual coaching.
  2. For second to fourth fifth teachers - Communities of Practice (CoP)
  3. Alumni Network to help participating teachers stay connected and share their professional growth and expertise after participating in the coaching or CoPs programs.

Register your interest to participate in these free supports.

Webinars for first-year early childhood teachers

We offered a series of free interactive webinars to meet the needs of ECTs in their first months of teaching. These events provided first-year teachers with practical information and tips to help get the most out of this exciting stage of their careers. These events have now finished.

Think Sheets (summaries) of the Webinars are available below. Webinar recordings will be made available shortly.

Term One

Webinar one

Who am I in the world of children? – Cultivating our professional identity with Kirsty Liljegren 

Think Sheet is available now. Webinar available shortly

Webinar two

Relationships with children: being known, being heard with David Gilkes 

Think Sheet is available now. Webinar available shortly

Webinar three

Relationships with peers and colleagues: the key to success with Dr Anne Kennedy

Think Sheet is available now. Webinar available shortly

Term two

Webinar four

Preparing for your wellbeing – self-care strategies for the exciting early days of teaching with Lisa Baker

Think Sheet is available now. Webinar available shortly

Webinar five

Managing different approaches to pedagogy with colleagues

Think Sheet is available now. Webinar available shortly

Beginning teacher conferences

The Beginning Teachers Conference 2022 is designed to prepare and inspire all beginning early childhood teachers as they start their education careers.

Get insights from leaders in the early childhood sector who will share powerful stories and evidence-based learnings you can apply to your new career including:

  • How to create environments that support learning and belonging
  • How to support children’s developing pro-social skills
  • What it means to build authentic and sustained relationships with families
  • How the VEYLDF can support the development and delivery of a quality program
  • How to design a responsive and child-centred program

This year’s conference series is offered in two formats. Delegates can choose to attend in person or attend online. Dates and times are as follows:

In-Person
26 July or 9 September
9:30am - 3:00pm 
Cost: Free

Victorian Academy of Teaching and Leadership
603-615 Queensberry Street, North Melbourne
(Formerly known as the Bastow Institute for Educational Leadership)

Online 3 August or 15 September
9:00am - 3:00pm 
Cost: Free

To register go to

The Beginning Teacher Conference 2022 - Semann & Slattery (arlo.co)

Mentoring for ECTs

Help is available for provisionally registered teachers to be guided through the process to move to full teacher registration with the assistance of a mentor. Visit How to find a mentor for more information.

Funding to support provisionally registered ECTs

Funding is available for early childhood services to support provisionally registered ECTs to move to full registration with the Victorian Institute of Teaching. Visit funding to support provisionally registered early childhood teachers for more information.

Links to other supports

Financial support to study and work in early childhood - incentives of between $9,000 and $50,000 are available for ECTs to take up positions in regional areas rolling out the nation-leading Three-Year-Old Kindergarten reform

School Readiness Funding - a permanent and ongoing part of the Victorian kindergarten funding model. It funds programs and supports that aim to build the capacity of kindergarten services, educators and families to support children's learning and development outcomes.