In recognition of the importance of early play-based learning in improving life outcomes for our children, the Government is funding the delivery of the Working Together for 3 Year Olds – targeted pre-school initiative.
This follows the decision made by the Government on 14 August 2017, based on the Social and Economic Impacts of Implementing the Voluntary Earlier School Starting Age Report from the Secretary, not to proceed with implementing the voluntary earlier school starting age, but instead to implement the Working Together for 3 Year Olds to provide Government subsidised participation in quality and accredited pre-school programs for eligible three year old children, for 10 hours a week (400 hours a year).
The program will be delivered by accredited services in the Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) sector, or by a government school where ECEC services are not available.
The Working Together for 3 Year Olds initiative will be available for eligible children with the greatest need, with access being guided by a set of criteria to include children who are three years old by 1 January in any year from 2020 (i.e. the year before Kindergarten) and:
- whose parents/guardians are Health Care Card holders, or
- who are Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander, or
- who are receiving support or intervention from the Child Safety Service.
Further information relating to this decision and the Working Together for 3 Year Olds initiative can be found in the resources below:
- Working Together for 3 Year Olds – Fact Sheet
- Working Together for 3 Year Olds – FAQs
- Social and Economic Impacts of Implementing the Voluntary Earlier School Starting Age Report from the Secretary
- The Impact on the ECEC Sector of Changes to School Starting Age – KPMG Report
- Earlier School Starting Age Impacts and Opportunities – Michael White Consultation Report