Your child could attend one of our kindergartens for longer, for free - even if they're under 3. An extra 10 hours funding, over and above the funded 20, is available per child, per week for 3-5 year olds, and 2-3s also get 30 hours for FREE: but there are some conditions*.
Why are we doing this?
We believe that every child deserves to be a 'kindy kid', because it's such a great start to their formal education. While many others offer just the standard 20 free hours, we want all 2-5 year olds to have the opportunity to get a Kidsfirst start.
How can we afford to do this?
Kidsfirst is a not-for-profit organisation, which means that any money we don’t spend, goes into kindergarten-based initiatives to benefit early childhood education in our regions.
Like any responsible organisation, we keep a buffer of funding (reserves) at all times for emergencies or to put in place special projects or initiatives, for example, building a new kindergarten, ICT upgrades and so on.
In this instance, the Kidsfirst Board has set aside enough funding for now to ensure that as many Kidsfirst children as possible have access to kindergarten education.This funding covers the parent portion of any fees over and above the government’s 20 Hours ECE – effectively making kindergarten entirely free for all children, regardless of age.
How long is this offer available?
As it currently stands, the “No Fees” offer is reviewed on an annual basis.
Which children qualify?
All children currently attending our kindergartens and early learning centre have the potential to qualify, subject to some terms and conditions. This also includes children under the age of three years as well as children aged over five years.
*What are the terms and conditions that will apply?
Kidsfirst is a not for profit organisation, and we have a 'No Fees' offer that enables all children, all ages to attend for free for up to 6 hours a day, 30 hours per week - that’s a full week at kindergarten. As long as parents and caregivers commit their child’s Ministry of Education-funded 20 hours ECE to Kidsfirst then they are eligible.
So, for Children aged three and over, the child’s 20 hours ECE (government-funded) are all used at a Kidsfirst service (kindergarten or early learning centre) and we top up the hours to 30.
Children aged under three will also get the benefit of the Free offer as long as their parents/caregivers make a commitment for the future – that when their child turns three, their 20 Hours ECE will be used at a Kidsfirst service.
The maximum number of free hours per day is limited to six (6).
Settlement or regular repayments of any outstanding debt must be in place before a parent/caregiver can take advantage of the “No Fees” offer. Failure to get up to date with regular payments may jeopardise the “No Fees” offer.
Regular attendance is expected and frequent absences may jeopardise the “No Fees” offer.
How many extra hours under the “No Fees” offer can a child attending one of our kindergartens get?
This will totally depend on the available hours at your kindergarten. The maximum number of FREE hours available to an individual child, however, will be limited to six hours per day.
IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS PLEASE ASK YOUR HEAD TEACHER OR CONTACT US AT KIDSFIRST KINDERGARTENS.