MORE PLACES FOR PRESCHOOLERS IN GROWING AREAS
Written on the 20 September 2018 by Kevin Conolly
"The NSW Liberal Government is investing more in early childhood education than ever before," said Member for Riverstone Kevin Conolly.
There will be more opportunities on offer for preschool aged kids in growth areas like the Riverstone Electorate, thanks to a $6 million infrastructure investment by the NSW Liberal Government which will provide support for almost 400 new preschool places across the state.
The funding is part of the additional $42.1 million investment in the NSW Government's Capital Works Grants program, which was announced in the 2018-19 State Budget to support NSW preschools over the next four years.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the grants will allow preschool services to build, extend or renovate facilities to increase preschool places where there is evidence of high need and growing demand.
"There are more children attending preschool for 600 hours in the year before school than ever before, and the Government is making sure services are supported," Ms Berejiklian said.
"The NSW Liberal Government has reduced preschool fees, is continuing to improve the quality of services, and is meeting the demand for future enrolment growth through ongoing investment in infrastructure."
The NSW Government recently announced a $197.8 million investment to subsidise all three-year-olds in community preschools, so this round of Capital Works is integral in ensuring there is enough space for the anticipated increase in enrolments in preschools.
"The NSW Liberal Government is prioritising early childhood education after years of neglect under former Labor governments, which means children in areas like the Riverstone Electorate have more opportunities than ever before," Mr Conolly said.
Minister for Early Childhood Education Sarah Mitchell said preschool enrolments are expected to boom in the coming years, so the Government must be prepared.
"Looking forward, population data shows the number of preschool-aged children in NSW will increase by 6 per cent by 2021.The NSW Government is meeting this head on, and recognises that children and families living in growth areas require high quality preschool services that suit their needs," Ms Mitchell said.
"Since the Capital Works Grants program was introduced in 2013, the NSW Government has invested $28 million to help almost 70 preschools either extend their existing preschool or build a brand new one. It is estimated that this investment has increased preschool places in NSW by more than 1500."
Applications are currently open for Capital Works Grants here: https://education.nsw.gov.au/early-childhood-education/operating-an-early-childhood-education-service/grants-and-funded-programs/capital-works-grants
Author: Kevin Conolly
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