Approved providers asked to ‘get in quick’ for public consultation on approval streamline
Approved providers have been advised by the Federal Department of Education regarding the Department’s intentions to consider streamlining early childhood education and childcare approval processes across Australian states and territories.
With the challenges of closures and a number of core staff taking annual leave during this time of year, approved providers have been encouraged to note the final date for submission – Friday 8 January 2021 – in their planning.
The NSW branch of the Australian Childcare Alliance (ACA) has gathered that the intention of the governments (ie federal, states and territories) may be:
- to ultimately streamline the applications/approvals processes so that once approved in any one jurisdictions as a new Approved Provider or for Child Care Subsidy (CCS), such approvals will be recognised across for all jurisdictions;
- to NOT lengthen the overall time that multiple/concurrent government processes are meant to take;
- to reduce existing duplications for applications and the at times inconsistent documentation required of the same Approved Provider across jurisdictions; and,
- to strengthen the standards and achieving consistency of processes to detect and prevent fraudulent behaviour (where certain Regulatory Authorities are more effective than other Regulatory Authorities).
ACA NSW expressed a “prevailing concern” that current delays in approving applications for Child Care Subsidy can cost applicants an average of $14,601 per week of forgone CCS as income for long daycare services and $3,044 per week for out-of-school-hours (OSHC) services.
ACA NSW has also learned that this consultation round will focus on the Child Care Subsidy component, with future consultation rounds on the possibility of convergence with the application/approvals processes for Approved Provider, Service Approval, etc.
Email written submissions, to [email protected] are sought by Friday, 8 January 2021, with ACA NSW encouraging its members to also send feedback and commentary on the issue to [email protected] to contribute to a submission on behalf of the organisation.