Complaints about Other Early Childhood Services and Programs

​​​​​The Department funds organisations to provide a range of early childhood services and programs. Some of these services and programs do not operate under the National Quality Framework and the Victorian Children’s Services Act 1996 ​(Other Early Childhood Services and Programs).

What are Other Early Childhood Services and Programs?​

Other Early Childhood Services and Programs include:​

​​Service or program​Activity or p​roject

Aboriginal Early Years Services​​​​

  • In Home Support and Home Based Learning Programs
  • Indigenous Kindergarten Services (Koorie Preschool Assistants Program)
​Early Childhood Intervention Services (ECIS)
  • ECIS Intake
  • ECIS Flexible Support Packages
  • Preschool Field Officer Program
  • Kindergarten Inclusion Support Package
  • ECIS funded organisations
  • Specialist Children’s Services
Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Services
  • Universal MCH Service 
  • MCH Line
  • Enhanced MCH Service 
Parenting Services
  • Regional Parenting Services
  • Strengthening Parents Support Program
  • Signposts for building better Behaviour
  • Parentline
  • Supported Playgroup
Partnerships
  • Best Start

​Kindergarten programs and services​

For complaints about governance and regulation of child care or licenced services (including kindergartens), see

For queries regarding access and participation to funded kindergarten program and services including Access to E​​arly Learning, contact the Early Childhood Performance and Planning Advisers at Regional Offices.​

Things to co​nsider before you make a complaint

Before approaching staff or the Committee of Management of the service or program, consider the following:

  • be clear about the topic or issue you want to discuss
  • focus on the things that are genuinely affecting your child
  • remain calm and remember you may not have all the facts relating to the circumstances of the topic or issue you wish to discuss
  • think about what would be an acceptable outcome for you and your child
  • be informed; check the relevant legislation and the service’s policies or guidelines, where relevant.​

How do I raise an iss​ue or make a complaint?

Staff of the service or program provider have an obligation to deal with issues in a positive, constructive and professional manner. 

When raising a complaint with staff, be factual, respectful and constructive.

In the first instance contact the staff or Management of the service or program provider.

Contact the staff and​ the management of the service or program

It is the service or program provider’s responsibility to deal with all complaints and to notify the Department, if required.  The service or program provider’s staff is required to deal with and respond to your complaint in a respectful, confidential, effective and timely way.   

You can raise any concerns you have about the services you and your child are receiving.  

Ask to see the service or program’s written procedures for dealing with complaints. All service providers must have a written procedure that states who you need to speak to about your complaint, how they will respond and which complaints the Department must be advised of. The name and the telephone number of the person who deals with complaints should be displayed at the entrance to the service. 

You can write a note, telephone or speak to the relevant staff in person about your concerns.

The relevant staff, together with any others who may be involved, should be given a reasonable amount of time to take the steps required to resolve or address your concerns. Remember, it may not always be possible to resolve an issue to your complete satisfaction.

Contact the management of the service including the Chief Executive Officer

Most concerns are resolved at the first step.  

If the issue remains unresolved after you have approached the relevant staff or if you are concerned about service policy, you can raise it further with the management of the service or the Board of Management, where applicable.  It is recommended that you provide your concerns in writing to the Chief Executive Officer.

Contact the Department’s regional office​

If you feel that your complaint has not been addressed satisfactorily by the service or program provider, you can contact your relevant Departmental regional office. If you are unsure about which region your service or program provider is in, please ask them directly.

The Early Childhood Quality, Participation and Access Manager will provide you with advice and assistance and, if required, direct your complaint to other regional staff to respond.

The Regional Director will ensure any formal written complaint is reviewed.

It is the regional office's responsibility to:

  • ensure that complaints, wherever possible, are resolved with the service provider;
  • ensure the service provider has policy and procedures in place to address complaints and that the procedures are followed correctly
  • ensure that procedures at the service or program provider are in accordance with the Department's service agreement framework​.

The regional office may refer your complaint to other areas or branches within the Department. You will be notified of this and of any major delays in addressing your complaint.

For your regional office's contact details, see: Regional Offices.

​Contact the Department's central office

It is suggested that you write to the Department's central office if all the other steps have not led to a satisfactory resolution. 

How to lodge a written co​​mplaint 

Writing down your complaint is a useful way to put all of your information together and clarify your concerns. It also means you will have a clear record of the complaint.

You can use the Department's complaint form to help you to put together all the information you need to submit a written complaint.  See:

If you are having difficulties filling out the form, you can contact your regional office for assistance. You can send your complaint by post, email or fax.

The Department's central office will respond within 20 working days. However, the more complex and sensitive the issues you raise, the more time will be needed to investigate or follow up with the relevant parties.  We will let you know if there are any major delays. ​

What happens when you ​make a formal complaint to the Department?

All notifications to the Department are treated confidentially. Your identity cannot be disclosed unless you give written consent or a court grants leave for this to occur.

If you provide your name and contact details when you make a complaint, the Department will provide you with details of the outcome of their investigation.

Please send your complaint to:

By post: Address to the relevant contact found below

Department of Education and Training
GPO Box 4367
Melbourne  VIC  3001

Email:  community.stakeholders@edumail.vic.gov.au​

Who are the central office contacts for Early Childhood Services and Programs?​

Aboriginal Early Years Services

Executive Director
Koorie Outcomes Division
Early Childhood and School Education Group
Department of Education and Training

Early Years Inclusion and Intervention Services

Director
Inclusion Access and Participation Branch
Wellbeing Health and Engagement Division
Early Childhood and School Education Group
Department of Education and Training

Early Years Inclu​sion and Intervention Services

Director
Inclusion Access and Participation Branch
Wellbeing Health and Engagement Division
Early Childhood and School Education Group
Department of Education and Training

Maternal and Child He​alth Services

Director​​​
Prevention & Health Promotion Branch
Wellbeing Health and Engagement Division
Early Childhood and School Education Group
Department of Education and Training​

Parenting Se​rvices

Director
Early Learning and Development Reform Branch
Early Years and Primary Reform Division
Early Childhood and School Education Group
Department of Education and Training​

Further options

If all avenues for resolution of your complaint have been explored, and you are not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled by the Department, you can contact the Victorian Ombudsman on:

Telephone: (03) 9613 6222

Email: ombudvic@ombudsman.vic.gov.au ​​