2022 ECA National Conference, 5 - 8 October 2022

2022 Early Childhood Australia National Conference, 5–8 October, Canberra

Passion to power: Our future profession

Our state of the art virtual platform allows participation in real-time, plus access to the on-demand library for up to 60 days post conference.

As we gather in Canberra, the seat of government, it is timely to reflect on how far we, as early childhood professionals, have come—from the visionary and passionate women of the 1920s to the competent and qualified educators of the 2020s—and where we hope to go next. Now is the time to design and plan our future. Let’s consider how we can move beyond just being viewed as ‘essential workers’ and position ourselves as thought leaders and powerbrokers.

In keeping with the broader theme of reflecting on the past to design the future of the profession, the insights and knowledge shared by keynote speakers from past ECA conferences will serve as inspiration for the 2022 presentations.

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Top five reasons to virtually attend the 2022 ECA National Conference

If you’d like to attend this leading event for the sector, book your virtual pass today. Starting at the great price of $385, a virtual delegate pass will give you access to:

  1. live streamed keynote addresses by The Hon Julia Gillard AC, Dylan Alcott AO, Dean Parkin and Dr Laura Jana
  2. watch the full program of 100+ sessions
  3. the on-demand library for 60 days after the conference
  4. connect and network with exhibitors, sponsors and attendees
  5. visit virtual exhibitors to win prizes.

This conference program is accredited by the ACT Teacher Quality Institute and has been accredited for 14 hours addressing standards 1.3, 1.4, 2.1, 6.2 and 7.4 from the Australian Professional Standards for Teaching.

Meet our Keynote speakers

The Hon Julia Gillard AC

The Hon Julia Gillard AC

Julia Gillard was the 27th prime minister of Australia.

She currently serves as the Chair of Beyond Blue, one of Australia’s leading mental health awareness bodies. 

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Dr Laura Jana

Dr Laura Jana

Dr Laura Jana is a US-based paediatrician, early educator and social entrepreneur dedicated to addressing the most pressing needs of children, families and communities.

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Dylan Alcott AO

Dylan Alcott AO

Australian of the Year 2022, Dylan Alcott AO, is one of the country’s most successful and well recognised Paralympians. In 2021 he became the only male in any form of tennis to win the ‘Golden Slam’.

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Dean Parkin

Dean Parkin

Dean Parkin is from the Quandamooka peoples of Minjerribah (North Stradbroke Island) in Queensland. Dean was closely involved in the process that resulted in the historic Uluru Statement from the Heart.

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Who should attend?

Whether you’ve been to an ECA Conference before, or never attended, there’s always something new to learn and someone new to meet.

The conference is for anyone studying or working in early childhood education and care, including:

  • Students
  • Early and mid-career educators
  • Early childhood educators
  • Room leaders
  • Educational leaders
  • Early childhood teachers
  • Preschool teachers
  • Primary school teachers
  • Directors
  • Administration staff
  • Policymakers
  • Government representatives
  •  Early childhood researchers and academics

The conference program always offers a variety of streams and sessions to suit attendees at different points in their careers. Ongoing professional development, such as attending the ECA National Conference, can keep staff up to date with advances in the sector, enhance skills and practice and improve the quality of the programs they provide for children and their families.

Services that send a cross-section of staff benefit from all that the conference has to offer. 


Designing our profession

‘teachers with the good face should get paid more’

Maria Aarts, 2016

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Beyond Quality

‘Do you choose to work with quality or go beyond quality?’

Professor Peter Moss, 2019

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Self-regulation and wellbeing

‘There is no such thing as a bad kid’

Dr Stuart Shanker, 2018

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Play, technology and power

‘take the children’s points of view’

Ann Pelo, 2014

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Reflection and reconciliation

as uncomfortable as it is, we need to reckon with our history

Stan Grant, 2018

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Climate activism and sustainability

‘I want you to act as if the house is on fire, because it is’

Greta Thunberg, 2019

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Welcome from Chris Legg, ECA National President

Chris Legg, ECA National President

The Early Childhood Australia (ECA) National Conference is one of the most eagerly anticipated events among those who work with young children. Early childhood educators, teachers, academics, leaders and allied professionals from across Australia, and from even farther afield, come here to be inspired through shared ideas and experiences in an environment conducive to collegiality and collaboration.

Delegates are able to critically and constructively review their thoughts and actions, and also celebrate among peers the achievements attained and advancements made in improving outcomes for children, their families and those who work with them every day.

During the 2022 ECA National Conference and associated events, delegates will have various opportunities to meet with old and new acquaintances and to forge relationships with others in the sector. I look forward to warmly welcoming delegates to Canberra and to connecting with everyone in person.

Discount for ECA Members

Discount for ECA members

Early Childhood Australia members receive a discount to the conference. If you are interested in becoming a member, there are a variety of Early Childhood Australia membership categories to choose from.

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Become a sponsor

Become a sponsor

Sponsorship of the Early Childhood Conference is a great way to promote your organisation or business to the early childhood sector. ECA will ensure that your investment is worthwhile with many direct and indirect benefits.

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Registration for the 2022 ECA National Conference is closed!

Subscribe to the E-newsletter to keep up to date with the latest conference news.

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National Convention Centre Canberra

31 Constitution Ave, Canberra ACT 2601


+61 2 6242 1800 conference@earlychildhood.org.au


Our Sponsors

We would like to thank our sponsors—without your support the ECA National Conference would not be possible.


Modern Teaching Aids logo

Modern Teaching Aids has been helping teachers and educators deliver the right learning outcomes for over 65 years. We stock the largest array of teaching resources and education supplies in Australia.

Our extensive range of educational products has been sourced from around the world to ensure Australian educators and their students have access to the best quality products. All resources come with a 12-month warranty and are quality assured. We stock over 20,000 resources in robotics, digital technologies, art & craft, mathematics, literacy resources, developmental products, centre consumables, STEAM, stationery, science equipment, STEM, sporting gear, children’s furniture, books, play and educational toys. And all our resources come with a 12-month warranty and are quality assured.

Visit www.teaching.com.au or contact our specialist team by email at sales@teaching.com.au or by phone on 1800 251 497.

  • Modern Teaching Aids (MTA)
  • G8 Education
  • Woolworths at work
  • HESTA logo
  • Only About Children logo
  • KU Children's Services
  • Be You and Beyond Blue logo
  • Storypark
  • Business Events Perth logo
  • Goodstart Early Learning
  • Australian Government Department of Education
  • Department of Education and Training (Vic)
  • Tasmanian Government, Department of Education
  • NSW Government
My Country

© Licensed by Kayannie Denigan


This artwork is from the My Country series by artist Kayannie Denigan. Kayannie was inspired to create the series when, flying over the land of her ancestors, she was struck by the beauty of the harsh desert. The delineation of the shrubs, grasses, rocks and sand dunes she observed from the plane window was stark and stunning. Upon returning home to Canberra, Kayannie developed the series using vivid colours to represent rocks, mountains, night skies, rivers, desert flowers and plants of her childhood home, Cape York, the Luritja deserts of her Nanna’s lands and the Kuku Yalanji beaches and rainforests of her Nanny’s Country. Kayannie incorporated these elements into her work, both on canvas and in digital formats, to show how they are connected—forming part of Australia’s beauty—but also separate and powerful on their own.

Kayannie Denigan is an emerging Australian Aboriginal artist who currently lives and works in Canberra, Ngunnawal Country. She is Luritja by birth and is connected to Iltjitjari and Unturu in Central Australia through her grandmother (Nanna) and great-grandmother respectively. Kayannie is also connected to the Bagarrmuguwarra, Guugu Yimithirr and Kuku Yalanji people of Far North Queensland, specifically Cape York, through her Nganjan (adopted father). She maintains strong connections to Country at Buru, Starke and Yuku Budhuwigu and to the communities of Hope Vale and Wujal Wujal. Kayannie works predominantly in acrylic on canvas and is inspired by a painting style that was passed down from her grandmothers—the iconic dots and symbols of Central Desert art. She combines this ancient form of storytelling with the colours and stories from the lands and cultures of her childhood home in Cape York.