Knox Council consults with community about the future of kindergarten services
The Sector > Workforce > Advocacy > Knox Council consults with community about the future of kindergarten services

Knox Council consults with community about the future of kindergarten services

by Freya Lucas

March 13, 2023

A panel representing the Knox community will support the local Council in considering options for the future of kindergarten services in response to major changes to the way kindergarten is delivered and funded in Victoria.


Mayor Marcia Timmers-Leitch said the Council is committed to supporting local families to access high-quality kindergarten services as well as delivering value for the local community.


“In the past we’ve operated up to 30 kindergartens but demand for places has been gradually declining as more families choose to access kindergarten through child care,” the Mayor said.


“This year, we’re delivering the same number of kindergarten places across fewer locations – this is more financially sustainable and the responsible thing to do.”


The changes the Victorian government has introduced, she continued, “pose significant challenges due to our small and ageing kindergarten buildings, declining enrolments in sessional programs and limited financial resources.”


“We must carefully consider the role Council should play moving forward in providing value for the people of Knox and supporting children and families to live healthy, fulfilling lives.”


A number of options are currently being considered by the Council including: 


  • reducing the number of sites where it offers kindergarten and increasing to 15 hours a week for all three and four year olds; 
  • providing sessional kindergarten only at the Knox Children and Family Centres in Bayswater and Wantirna South; and 
  • no longer providing sessional kindergarten.


Under the last two scenarios, Council would work with the Victorian Government’s Department of Education and Training to transition stand alone kindergartens to a new provider. 


An independent consultant has recruited a demographically representative community panel to provide input to Council. This follows Council’s engagement with children, families and the wider community last year to share what they value about kindergarten services in Knox.


“It is vital to us that our community has a voice in our decision making and the community panel will ensure we hear from a wide variety of people in Knox,” the Mayor said.


The community panel will meet throughout March and April and will present a statement back to Council for consideration. A final decision is expected by mid-2023.


To follow the panel process and stay up to date, register here

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