2019 National Partnership Agreement still unconfirmed
The National Partnership Agreement for 2019, which is listed on the Australian Department of Education and Training website as “under development” has been used by Shadow Minister for Early Childhood Education and Development Amanda Rishworth as evidence of a “complete lack of interest or commitment to early education and preschool funding” by the Federal Government.
When asked last week in Senate Estimates if the National Partnership Agreement for the 2019 preschool year has been signed yet, departmental officials confirmed it had not, according to Ms Rishworth, who also claimed the agreement was only sent to the states and territories on 25 September 2018.
Ms Rishworth questioned the delay in time between the announcement of the funding rollover into 2019, which was announced on 3 February 2018, and the sending of the agreement on 25 September saying there was no rational explanation for the 234 day delay.
When asked if there was a funding allocation for preschools in 2020, Ms Rishworth says the reply was “that’s a matter for government’, which was also the reply given to questions around any issues which needed to be addressed before the commitment was made, or if the Government could guarantee to continue funding preschools at the current levels.