South Australia announces relief package to support council-run centres
Eight South Australian early childhood education and care (ECEC) services will benefit from a significant investment from the SA Government, designed to mitigate loss of income from COVID-19.
The investment will see the State Government match the Commonwealth’s support under the Early Childhood Education and Care Relief Package (EECRP) for a period of 12 weeks, at a cost of around $700,000, up until 28 June this year and backdated to 6 April.
As part of local government, council-run childcare centres are not eligible for the Federal Government’s JobKeeper Payment, meaning the financial impacts of remaining open have been more pronounced than for others in the sector.
In SA, council-run childcare centres employ a total of 137 people, supporting almost 400 children across the state. The investment will be provided through the Community and Jobs Support Fund, which forms part of the SA Government’s response delivered to deal with the impacts of the coronavirus.
SA Education Minister John Gardner said the support being provided was ‘crucial’ in helping the eight centres to remain open during this challenging time.
The investment, he added, particularly supports regional communities, with seven of the eight council-run centres being located in regional areas such as Coober Pedy and Port Augusta.
To read the announcement in full, please see here. Further information about the grants will be made available to eligible services in due course.