In late 2008, the Commonwealth and all Australian states and territories signed a National Partnership Agreement on Early Childhood Education ("Universal Access").
This partnership commits all Australian governments to achieving, by 2013, universal access to early childhood education programs for all children in the year before school, delivered by university qualified early childhood teachers, for 15 hours a week, 40 weeks a year.
The New South Wales Government is strongly committed to the goal of "universal access" through the NSW 2021 State Plan target of all children in NSW having "access to a quality early childhood education program in the 12 months prior to formal schooling by 2013".
Funding allocation for NSW
NSW has received $278.6 million from the Commonwealth to help achieve this goal over the five years of the Agreement.
So far this funding has been used to boost existing funding of preschools through subsidies and the recent fee reductionis for families. More measures will be introduced through 2013., as well as a range of initiatives to support access and participation and as