ACA Victoria applauds the Victorian Government’s
commitment to early learning
Victoria’s peak body for early learning (child care) services commends the Victorian Government’s commitment to support families and children with measures recently announced in the State Budget 2021-2022.
The Victorian Government has committed $400.7 million to continue the nation-leading reform agenda in early childhood education including the rollout of three-year-old kindergarten across the whole of Victoria, to upgrade and build new early learning facilities and to ensure our most vulnerable children remain supported as our state rebuilds from the coronavirus pandemic.
“The Victorian Government’s commitment to deliver on its reform agenda further recognises the benefits of early learning and through its significant investment of $400.7 million in the early learning sector and its workforce,” ACA Victoria President Sarah Tullberg said.
“In addition to the commitment to offer five hours of three-year-old kindergarten for all eligible Victorian children in 2022, the Victorian Government’s considered, complementary policies should ensure the success of the reforms by addressing workforce attraction and retention, whilst ensuring that the most vulnerable children in our community have access to their vitally important early childhood education,” Ms Tullberg continued.
The key funding announcements include:
- $167.1 million to continue the roll-out of universal Three-Year-Old Kindergarten, supporting children to access the benefits of two years of kindergarten before school.
- $32.4 million of this funding will also expand workforce attraction and retention activities, to support the supply of qualified early childhood teachers to deliver kindergarten programs as they are established across the state.
- $33.8 million to deliver tailored support for vulnerable and disadvantaged children to participate in early childhood education and care.
- $8 million to expand the Koorie Pre-School Assistants program to four new locations and continue the Koorie Families as First Educators, as part of a wider $39.3 million investment to improve the educational outcomes of young Koorie people.
- $2.7 million has been committed to continue the early childhood language program, including grants to kindergartens to support delivery of language programs, along with further professional support and training.
“We look forward to working with the Victorian Government to support the implementation of these changes, whilst identifying further ways to invest in the early years, in the context of ensuring that every child in Australia has the best start in life.” Ms Tullberg concluded.