The Turnbull Government has released the new guidelines for a centrepiece of its additional $2.5 billion investment in child care and early learning.
Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham said a key component of the reforms is the Community Child Care Fund (CCCF) for services to give the best possible support to their families.
“The focus of the CCCF is ensuring that access and viability aren’t barriers for child care and early learning,” Minister Birmingham said.
“We’re committing $124 million each year through the CCCF to reduce the barriers in accessing child care, particularly for vulnerable families in disadvantaged communities. Eligible child care services will be able to apply for supplementary funding to support their operations, which will particularly help services that may be experiencing viability issues.”
Guidelines for the fund have been made available for viewing ahead of the opening of the first application round for the CCCF in August. As part of the grant process there will be an open competitive grant round for eligible child care services, and a restricted non-competitive grant round for Budget Based Funded services, including mobile services, that are transitioning to the new child care system.
“Since the legislation for our child care and early learning reforms passed in March, we’ve consulted widely on these guidelines and taken on board a number of suggestions,” Minister Birmingham said.
“Releasing the guidelines early ensures child care and early learning providers have ample opportunity to prepare their grant applications to ensure the provision of vital early childhood education and care in disadvantaged communities.”
The CCCF is one part of the Turnbull Government’s $2.5 billion additional investment into child care and early learning and broader reforms to the system that will:
- Better target subsidies to people working more hours and to those earning lower incomes
- Abolish the cap on child care subsidies for all low and middle income Australians
- Put downward pressure on incessant fee increases with an hourly fee cap
- Slash red tape so services can be more flexible in the hours they offer
- Deliver stronger compliance powers to ensure taxpayer funds aren’t abused
The opening date for the non-competitive grant process is still to be confirmed, however the CCCF competitive grant process will open on 23 August 2017.
To view the guidelines, visit CCCF Forecast.