Supporting Children in Early Childhood Education and Care WA | Grants Program Unveiled
The Australian Government and all states and territories have jointly committed to strengthening preschool education through the Preschool Reform Agreement (PRA). An ambitious national reform aimed at ensuring every child has access to high-quality early education.
The Preschool Reform Agreement (PRA) embodies a profound commitment to ensuring that every child, irrespective of their background, can access high-quality preschool education. One of the key reforms under the PRA is the flow of funding to all settings where preschool programs are delivered, including government schools, non-government schools, and the Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) sector.
Preschool in Western Australia, most commonly known as kindergarten, provides an invaluable foundation to children in the year prior to full-time school. It is the child’s first step in their formal educational journey, and the PRA is dedicated to making this journey equitable and empowering from the beginning.
Following an extensive stakeholder engagement process in Western Australia, a Grants Program has been established to distribute funding to the ECEC sector. The Supporting Children in ECEC WA Grants Program is designed to assist the ECEC sector in securing funding for initiatives that are dedicated to improving outcomes for children. Specifically, this Grants Program provides funding for ECEC settings in line with the objectives of the PRA to facilitate children’s early learning and development and support their transition to school. Objectives of the PRA include:
- maintaining universal access to affordable, quality preschool programs for all children
- improving participation in preschool programs
- maximising the benefit of the preschool year by improving outcomes for children
The Grants Program is firmly committed to ensuring universal access to affordable and high-quality preschool programs for all children. Recognising that every child deserves a strong foundation for their educational journey, the program strives to break down barriers and reduce disparities in access to quality preschool education.
Aligned to the objectives of the PRA, the Grants program places a dedicated focus on enhancing preschool participation and outcomes within specific demographics, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, children living in regional, remote, and very remote communities, those experiencing significant disadvantage, children from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse backgrounds, and children under the care of the CEO, Department of Communities. It seeks to address the distinct needs and challenges faced by each of these groups, striving for a more inclusive and equitable preschool experience for all children.
Child Australia’s CEO, Ms Tina Holtom said, “We are proud to support the WA Government with the distribution of these funds to the ECEC sector. These funds will help to progress critical initiatives that provide optimal support for children that need it most as they prepare for their transition to school.”
Starting from 1st November, eligible services can begin submitting applications for the Supporting Children in ECEC WA Grants. To ensure a smooth process, services are encouraged to carefully review the Grant Guidelines to confirm eligibility and ensure they have all necessary application requirements prepared.