Free kinder: information for parents and carers

Free kinder is part of the $169.6 million funding in the 2020-2021 Victorian Budget.

In 2021, some kindergartens and long day care services will take part in Free Kinder. This means free kinder programs for all four-year olds and reduced fees for eligible three-year olds.

Free kinder will help your family save around $2,000 for each child enrolled in a funded kindergarten taking part in the program. If your child goes to unfunded three-year-old programs in sessional (standalone) kindergartens you'll pay less fees.

Eligibility for free kinder

If your child’s sessional or long day care service takes part in the free kinder program, your child will be eligible for free kinder in 2021. This includes children attending funded kindergarten programs in the year before school (Four-Year-Old Kindergarten).

How the funding works

Sessional kindergarten services taking part in free kinder will get a payment of $2,122 per child. This will help them to provide each child with free, 15-hours of kindergarten.

Long day care services with a funded kindergarten program will receive an extra child payment of $2,000 to help cover fees that you would usually pay . Your child must be in a funded kindergarten place in that service.

Sessional kindergarten services with an unfunded three-year-old program can access a payment of $1,600 for each child enrolled in a program of five or more hours each week. If programs are less than five hours, this amount will be on a pro-rata basis. This means the payment will depend on how many hours your child attends the service.

If your child goes to both sessional kindergarten and a long day care service, the Free Kinder funding is available at the service where your child receives their funded kindergarten program. You cannot receive the benefit twice.

This Free Kinder funding is on top of all normal kindergarten funding streams.

More information

You can contact your kindergarten or long day care service for more information on how to enrol your child.