School readiness funding

Extra support for kindergartens to help children to get the most out of their early learning.

Kindergartens to receive school readiness funding

All services with a funded kindergarten program, including long day care, are eligible to receive the funding.

School readiness funding will be rolled out to all Victorian kindergartens over the next three years. The areas in the first stage of the rollout will receive their funding in 2019. These represent around one-third of Victorian kindergartens.

In 2019, school readiness funding will be available for children starting in services at kindergarten programs in the following local government areas:

  • Bass Coast Shire
  • Baw Baw Shire
  • Brimbank City
  • Buloke Shire
  • Cardinia Shire
  • Casey City
  • Corangamite Shire
  • East Gippsland Shire
  • Gannawarra Shire
  • Glenelg Shire
  • Greater Dandenong City
  • Hindmarsh Shire
  • Horsham Rural City
  • Latrobe City
  • Melton City
  • Mildura Rural City
  • Moyne Shire
  • Northern Grampians Shire
  • South Gippsland Shire
  • Southern Grampians Shire
  • Swan Hill Rural City
  • Wellington Shire
  • Warrnambool City
  • West Wimmera Shire
  • Yarriambiack Shire

All kindergarten services run by Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations (ACCOs) will also receive funding in 2019.

In 2020, kindergarten services in the following local government areas will receive school readiness funding:

  • Hume City
  • Greater Shepparton City
  • Mitchell Shire
  • Moira Shire
  • Moreland City
  • Murrindindi Shire
  • Strathbogie Shire

In 2021, kindergarten services in the following local government areas will receive school readiness funding:

  • Alpine Shire
  • Ararat City
  • Ballarat City
  • Banyule City
  • Bayside City
  • Boroondara City
  • Borough of Queenscliffe
  • Campaspe Shire
  • Central Goldfields Shire
  • Colac Otway Shire
  • Darebin City
  • Frankston City
  • Glen Eira City
  • Golden Plains Shire
  • Greater Bendigo City
  • Greater Geelong City
  • Hepburn Shire
  • Hobsons Bay City
  • Indigo Shire
  • Kingston City
  • Knox City
  • Loddon Shire
  • Macedon Ranges Shire
  • Manningham City
  • Mansfield Shire
  • Maribyrnong City
  • Maroondah City
  • Melbourne City
  • Monash City
  • Moonee Valley City
  • Moorabool Shire
  • Mornington Peninsula Shire
  • Mount Alexander Shire
  • Nillumbik Shire
  • Port Phillip City
  • Pyrenees Shire
  • Rural City of Benalla
  • Rural City of Wangaratta
  • Stonnington City
  • Surf Coast Shire
  • Towong Shire
  • Whitehorse City
  • Whittlesea City
  • Wodonga City
  • Wyndham City
  • Yarra City
  • Yarra Ranges Shire

Funding for my kindergarten

Kindergarten services in the first roll-out areas have now received advice on the amount of funding they will receive in 2019. The amount of additional funding kindergarten programs will receive is based on the educational disadvantage levels of the services. This is measured by parental education and occupation, as this is an accurate predictor of educational disadvantage and is the same approach used in schools to allocate ‘needs-based’ funding.

Funding for each service will range from:

  • $1,000 for kindergartens with low levels of need and/or have small numbers of children
  • to more than $200,000 for kindergartens with very high levels of need large numbers of children.

The funding is ongoing and will become a permanent part of how kindergartens are funded.

Kindergartens services across the state must continue to collect parents’ occupation and education information. This will allow us to better understand the educational needs of children and services across Victoria. This will help determine how funding will be allocated in future years.

How kindergartens can spend their funding

Services will spend most of their school readiness funding on items from the menu of evidence-informed programs and supports.

These are a range of resources that have been externally validated for how well they support children’s learning and development in the three priority areas .The menu includes:

  • programs and services that target speech, language and literacy
  • allied health (speech therapists, psychologists, occupational therapists)
  • programs and services that support trauma informed practice, secure attachment and mental health
  • resources and programs to support the social and emotional wellbeing of children
  • support for cultural and linguistically diverse children and families
  • support for parents to support their child’s development.

The menu includes information for kindergarten services to consider when planning for how to spend the funding, including ways to assess whether the item is the right fit for a particular service.

The menu is available to all services, regardless of when they will be receiving school readiness funding, and contains a number of free or low-cost resources with half of all items costing less than $1,000.

Access a preliminary version of the menu.

Extra support for kindergartens

New dedicated branches of early childhood support staff have been established in the six regions where school readiness funding is set to roll out in 2019.

These staff will be able to work with kindergarten services to plan for how best to use school readiness funding, and to support them throughout the roll-out phase.

For more information, contact the Early Childhood Improvement Branch of your regional office:

Brimbank Melton office
P: 4334 0593
E: swvr@edumail.vic.gov.au

Inner Gippsland office
P: 5127 0400
E: sevr@edumail.vic.gov.au

Mallee office
P: 5051 1333
E: nwvr@edumail.vic.gov.au

Outer Gippsland office
P: 4113 7424
E: sevr@edumail.vic.gov.au

Southern Melbourne office
P: 8765 5600
E: sevr@edumail.vic.gov.au

Wimmera South West office
P: 5215 5103
E: swvr@edumail.vic.gov.au

For further support with data collection, see kindergarten information management (KIM) system

Planning for school readiness funding

The following documents will assist kindergarten services to start planning how to spend school readiness funding and use the menu of evidence-informed programs and supports.