Further drought funding announced to support ECEC services in NSW
Families in the Northern Tablelands of New South Wales will receive support through an additional round of funding for early childhood education and care (ECEC) services as the state continues to endure the worst recorded drought in history.
For the first time long day care centres are eligible for the funding with Northern Tablelands MP and Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall saying the expansion to include long day care centres as well as community preschools was made “because the drought doesn’t discriminate based on the type of service a child attends.”
The additional funding round was announced late last week as part of a $755 million boost to the NSW Government’s drought support package.
In the Northern Tablelands, the extra funds will be invested to support community and mobile preschools and long day care centres in the drought affected communities of Moree, Glen Innes, Bingara, Warialda, Inverell, Guyra, Armidale and Uralla.
Mr Marshall said the funding was a great initiative to help the states youngest students and their families to continue to access education in the years that are most crucial to a child’s development. The program, he said, would help ease the financial burden of the drought on young families, whilst also ensuring participation in a preschool program is maintained.
Services are able to use the funding in a flexible fashion, within the program guidelines, in a move which is designed to ensure each community can determine the type of support which would be of most benefit to the families using their service.
For a typical preschool provider in the Northern Tablelands, Mr Marshall said, the announcement represents a funding boost of around $9,000 from August, “all of which will go back into the pockets of young families.”
“This support allows preschools and long day centres to assist families and children in a range of ways, including travel arrangements to maintain participation in early childhood education, crisis planning or fee subsidies to further support families.” Mr Marshall said.
For more information on the Government’s Drought Support Package, visit the Drought Hub website here.