April moderately busy on the new centre opening front according to ACECQA register
The number of new service approvals issued to long day care (LDC) centres across Australia in April was less than in March but slightly more than the same period last year according to The Sector’s latest monthly analysis of the Australian Children’s Education & Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) register.
April tends to be a quieter month for new service approvals due largely to the two key holidays of Easter and ANZAC day.
21 new service approvals were granted across Australia in April, a slight increase on 19 last year and 18 the year before.
NSW and VIC see more activity in April 2019 than April 2018
With respect to the key states, New South Wales (NSW) saw 7 new openings, which is more than double last year. Victoria (VIC) also saw 7 which was slightly higher than last year.
Queensland (QLD), Western Australia (WA) and South Australia (SA) saw less centres opening this year than last.
Year to date centre openings still elevated relative to prior years
From a cumulative perspective the more modest increases in April were not sufficient to offset the gains in January, February and March.
Overall, 150 new centres opened across Australian states and territories in the first four months of 2019 compared to 146 in the first four months of 2018.
Across the key states QLD and VIC are both at the highest level for five years and NSW although below last year remains elevated.
It is important to recognise that early education supply and demand dynamics are localised, so a national snapshot may not be representative of any particular catchment circumstances, and to note that any references to supply are intended to be generalised comments on trends.
Kindergarten and outside school hours care centre numbers were broadly stable with no significant issuance or cancellation trends of note this month.
The Sector’s next monthly analysis of the Australian Children’s Education & Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) register will be released in the first week of June.
A more comprehensive supply and quality update be provided on the release of ACECQA’s Q1 quarterly snapshot expected in the second week of May.