The Parenthood is pleased to say that the NSW Government has extended funding for community preschools to include three-year-olds!
As part of the 2018 State Budget, the Berejiklian Government announced that NSW kids in community preschools will be funded for two years of preschool, recognising the raft of evidence from academics and experts that tell us there is incredible benefits for kids.
This is great news. But, unfortunately, only one in six NSW preschoolers will benefit from that funding.
Community preschools offer a wonderful education to children. However, their hours can make it difficult for working parents to consider that setting a viable choice.
Currently, 83 per cent of three-year-olds and 65 per cent of four-year-olds enrolled in preschool programs in NSW attend programs in long day care centres. It's unfortunate that they will still miss out on this funding.
That's why we think it's so important that preschoolers get funding no matter where they get their early learning, and why we hope that the NSW Government will take the important step of extending funding for three and four-year-olds to all preschool settings.
Please sign our petition, and tell Premier Berejiklian and Early Education Minister Sarah Mitchell that you want every NSW kid to benefit from early learning.
If you've already signed our petition, please share it with your friends and ask them to sign too.
previously, we said...
A decade ago, every Australian Government agreed that all children should have access to preschool in the year before school. Every State received funding from the Feds to achieve that, and every State except NSW has met the nationally agreed goal of 95% of children being enrolled in preschool.
Right now only 85 per cent of kids in NSW are benefiting from preschool. NSW continues to lag behind the rest of the country leaving thousands of four-year-olds missing out on a critical year of early learning before they start school.
This is due, in part, to the inequity in the way the NSW Government funds preschool. Parents are being left to foot the bill and kids are missing out.
On a per child basis, the NSW Government invests less than any other State – just $2122 per preschool child. This is less than half what Victoria spends on its children, and less than a third of what WA, SA and Tasmania spend.
This is because the NSW is shortchanging parents whose children attend preschool programs in long day care centres – and that's 68% of all children attending preschool in NSW.
The NSW Government allocates just 11% of its $268 million preschool budget to support these children, with 89% of funding allocated to support the 32% of children in community preschools.
We don’t begrudge the funding of community preschools – recent increases in their funding ended years of underfunding of community preschools.
We're calling on Premier Berejiklian to be preschool fair and fund early learning for all NSW kids no matter their centre or service.
Funding for community preschools is great - but why should the vast majority of children attending preschool through a long day care centre get so much less?
It's time that kids in NSW were treated fairly.