Early childhood education & care

The department, through the Early Childhood Education & Care Directorate, regulates the operation of early childhood education and care services for children from birth to school age. The department also provides some funding to education and care services.

Issue 22 of Early Childhood Extra out now

This issue includes information about the new Long Day Care National Partnerships Grants Program and the ECEC preschool census.
 
It also includes information about professional development opportunities in August 2015 and the assessment and rating visit survey.

The Preschool Funding Model one year on

2015 marks a year since the Preschool Funding Model (PFM) was introduced as a key plank in a series of reforms designed to achieve universal access to quality early childhood education.
 
The PFM One Year On report  highlights the positive impact of the new funding model including the demonstrated improvements in universal access to early childhood education in NSW, and how the community preschool sector and services are implementing the model.
 

$20 million Long Day Care National Partnership Grants Program

On 6 July 2015, the Minister for Early Childhood Education, the Hon Leslie Williams MP, announced a $20 million fund for Long Day Care service to offer preschool programs.

The funding will be made available to services in 2015 through the new Long Day Care National Partnership Grants Program, part of an agreement between the NSW and Commonwealth Governments to increase participation in preschool programs for four and five year old children in the year before school.

Advice to parents on childcare deposits

Parents considering paying a deposit to secure a place at a childcare centre or preschool should read the contract carefully.  NSW Fair Trading says grievances about education and childcare deposits have doubled from 2013 to 2014.

Mandatory reporting reminder

Providers need to ensure that all staff members are fully aware of their responsibilities as mandatory reporters.  If a staff member working in any type of service has reason to believe that a child is at risk of significant harm, this must be reported to the Child Protection Helpline on 133627 as soon as practicable.

Child protection training reminder

Providers have a legal requirement to ensure that the nominated supervisor of a service and any certified supervisor in day to day charge of a service has successfully completed a course in child protection that has been approved by NSW DEC.

National Quality Framework review

Feedback provided through the public consultation process into the 2014 review of the National Quality Framework was incorporated into the development of a Regulation Impact Statement (RIS).  This RIS was released for consultation in September 2014.  This consultation period has now closed.  

Mobile Preschools

ECECD will be working closely with the Mobile Children's Services Association to assist mobile preschools, that meet the definition of a mobile preschool, move to ‘opt in' fixed term contracts in 2016.
 

Transition to School Statement

The Minister for Education, in 2014, announced the release of the NSW Transition to School Statement, a new tool designed to support children moving from early childhood education to formal schooling.  Information sheets for early childhood education and care services, families and schools, community language translations and a video are available. 

Anaphylaxis Guidelines

ECECD has published new Anaphylaxis Guidelines for Early Childhood Education and Care Services. 

Preschool Disability Support Program

Preschool Disability Support Program (PDSP) supports the inclusion of children with disability in NSW community preschools.
This new program includes targeted funding for individual children and a new universal disability loading that will be provided to all community preschools, based on the total number of children included in the Community Preschool Funding Model.
The PDSP replaces the Supporting Children with Additional Needs (SCAN) Program and Intervention Support Program (ISP) for community preschools. ISP is still applicable for long day care and early childhood intervention services.

Productivity Commission Inquiry into Childcare and Early Learning

The Productivity Commission released the draft report of its Inquiry into Childcare and Early Learning on 22 July 2014 and submitted its Inquiry report to the Commonwealth Government on 31 October 2014.  

Operational Support Program

The Operational Support Program is designed to help eligible community preschools and mobile services adjust to the Preschool Funding Model and to build their capacity as sustainable organisations.

National Regulations

A number of amendments to the National Regulations (the Education and Care Services National Amendment Regulations 2013) (Amendment Regulation) came into effect on 1 June 2014The amendments are primarily aimed at reducing the regulatory burden on providers and services.

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Newsletter

The Early Childhood Extra looks at a range of issues relevant to the early childhood sector in NSW.  To view the current and previous issues of the newsletter or to subscribe, visit our Early Childhood Extra page.