I’m pleased to announce that all preschools in the Heathcote Electorate will receive a 2.5 per cent increase in funding in 2016 and may be eligible for bonus payments of up to 5 per cent.

The extra support for community preschools is part of a $45.5 million package from the NSW Government to increase the number of children attending preschool in the year before school.

I know the difference that quality early childhood education makes to our kids’ start at school.

All preschools will receive an increase in their base rate of funding of 2.5 per cent, which will help them keep pace with the cost of providing an early childhood service. This will take a lot of pressure off services and should help to keep fees stable for parents.

We are providing bonus payments to services who enrol four and five-year-old children for 15 hours per week. If services can demonstrate an increase in the enrolment of these children, in their last year before formal schooling, a bonus payment will be made. This payment will be up to 5 per cent of their total funding.

In many instances, services will have four and five-year-olds enrolled for two days a week, so enrolling your child for an extra half-day could mean a substantial bonus payment for your preschool.

In addition there will also be:

  • $4 million over two years to provide business advice and support to preschools
  • $12 million over four years for a ‘Preschools for Sustainable Communities’ program, to help maintain viability for community preschools in rural and remote areas; and
  • $5.5 million over three years to improve the collection of data from services.