Hundreds of new preschool places will be delivered across NSW thanks to a $6 million grant to improve preschool infrastructure, Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Minister for Early Childhood Education Sarah Mitchell have announced.
Ms 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.
“The NSW Liberals & Nationals Government has reduced preschool fees, is improving the quality of services, and is meeting the demand for future enrolment growth through ongoing investment in infrastructure.
“We know the long term benefits of early childhood education. That is why we are continuing to invest in improving access for families in areas that need it the most. We want to ensure all children have access to top-quality early childhood education.”
The investment is part of $42.1 million in capital works funding to extend the capital works program for another four years, creating more than 4000 additional preschool places in our fastest growing areas like Camden, Parramatta, Blacktown and the Hills.
Since the 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, adding more than 1500 places.
Earlier this year, the Liberals & Nationals announced nearly $200 million to extend community preschool subsidies to all three year olds in NSW – the first jurisdiction in Australia to do so.
Ms Mitchell said she is proud the NSW Government is investing more in early childhood education than ever before.
“The Liberals & Nationals are prioritising early childhood education after years of neglect under former Labor governments, and the results speak for themselves,” Ms Mitchell said.
“We recently announced nearly $200 million to subsidise 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 our preschools.”
Member for Ryde Victor Dominello said it is anticipated the local area will experience significant population growth in the coming years.
“In Ryde, we are experiencing growing demand for high quality preschools, so this injection is welcome news,” he said.
“Looking forward, 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.”
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