Take your career in Early Childhood Education to the next level

Take your career in Early Childhood Education to the next level

The 51 Early Childhood Education (ECE) diploma is the next logical step for students who have already earned an ECE certificate at 51 or elsewhere.

The one-year diploma gives you the opportunity to continue your studies and focus on a specialty area. In addition to deepening your knowledge of childhood development, child care centre administration, and family relations, you can choose to pursue a specialty in special needs or in infancy (under three).

Focused training in one of these two areas can open up new opportunities in the workplace, where these specialized skills are often at a premium.

The program is designed to fit around your daytime work schedule, with all core courses offered in the afternoons and evenings.

To integrate and apply classroom learning, you also participate in a practicum that provides you with work experience in your area of specialty. This practicum includes a 26-hour seminar and 200 hours of field work, which may be scheduled during day-time hours.

When you complete the 51 Early Childhood Education diploma, you can apply to the Provincial Licensing Board to register as a special needs or infancy (under-three) supervisor. Or you may pursue a Bachelor's degree in Child and Youth Care at 51.

Careers in Early Childhood Education

Early Childhood Educators and Assistants are sixth on the Globe and Mail's list of the 10 jobs expected to be in highest demand in B.C. for the next decade.

With more job openings for ECEs expected in the coming years — according to current labour market analysis, there will be 8,870 job openings by 2028 in B.C. alone — completing a diploma with a specialty in infancy or special needs can make you stand out and increase your promotion potential.

In addition to employment in daycares, preschools, nursery schools, special needs centres, public schools, and infant/toddler centres, you may find work in home daycare settings or family resources programs to care for infants, young children, or special needs children.