SA Budget measures are an important step toward national reform, Thrive by Five says
The Minderoo Foundation’s Thrive by Five campaign has welcomed a $50.1 million investment into early learning and childcare made by the South Australian government in its recent Budget and is encouraging the SA Government to bring early learning issues to the top of its agenda for the next National Cabinet meeting in July.
The Early Learning Strategy supports child development and parent engagement in learning, focusing on accessibility and quality of early learning and childcare.
Thrive by Five CEO and former South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill said it was ‘heartening’ to see the focus on early learning and childcare in states, following other NSW and Victorian Budget announcements.
“We congratulate the South Australian Premier Steven Marshall and his team on this crucial investment in future generations that recognises the importance of the early years on children’s future health, happiness, growth and development,” Mr Weatherill said.
“Now we need to see reform across the country. SA can play a leadership role in bringing early learning to the top of the agenda for the National Cabinet.”
“With early learning and childcare already on the National Cabinet agenda for July, we look forward to seeing ambitious proposals from state and territory leaders that will ensure early learning is high-quality, affordable and accessible to every child and family across the country.”
Thrive by Five also encourages the South Australian Government to consider expanding preschool programs to three-year-old children and providing pathways and incentives to address the early years workforce crisis.
This follows recent data showing that South Australia’s kindy enrolments have fallen, indicating there is scope for further reform.