State Budget Day: Preschool Subsidies, School Air Con + New Schools

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19th Jun 2018 was Budget day for NSW and families are said to be the “big winners” in the announcement. Here is an overview, sent to us by Mr Victor Dominello’s (MP) office, of the changes that will most impact families.

 

Education and Schools

  • NSW will become the first Australian state to provide universal access to community preschool for three years old under a $197.8 million program saving families an average of $825 a year and boosting access to early childhood education. The Budget will see the state government subsidise fees for all three-year-olds enrolled in community preschools from January 1, 2019. Previously families could only access the subsidy for children in the year before school. More information here.
  • $500 million over five years to provide air-conditioning for schools. Roll out TBA
  • Creative Kids Rebate – providing families with a $100 voucher per school-aged child for extracurricular activities including music, drama, visual arts and performing arts, coding and language classes. This complements the existing Active Kids $100 rebate which will continue. Effective 1 January 2019
  • $71.8 million to implement the Literacy and Numeracy Strategy in NSW schools. Effective July 2018
  • $50 million in additional flexible funding will be provided to government schools to implement the School Leadership Strategy – freeing up principals and school leaders from administrative work. Effective July 2018
  • $3 million for the first comprehensive review of the entire school curriculum since 1989. Effective July 2018
  • Funding for around 900 extra full-time equivalent teaching positions in NSW government schools. Effective July 2018
  • The NSW Government will also invest $1.3 billion on non-government schools, an increase of 7.5 per cent on 2017-18. Effective July 2018
  • $160 million to be spent in 2018-19 to continue its blitz on planned school maintenance, part of a record $747 million investment over four years. Effective July 2018
  • The NSW Government is investing $1.77 billion in TAFE NSW to boost vocational education and training and deliver the skilled workforce of the future. Effective July 2018
    • $18.5 million will be allocated to recruit up to 253 additional frontline teachers to meet increased demand for trade qualifications across the State.
    • $179.5 million of capital expenditure will support capital works projects, including new Connected Learning Centres in rural and regional NSW, campus upgrades and specialist training facilities. This represents an increase of $64.9 million on 2017-18 capital works expenditure.
    • The NSW Government’s investment in TAFE NSW is on top of the $285 million also in NSW Budget 2018 for 100,000 free apprenticeships.

 

Pregnancy and Childbirth

  • A new $35.3 million Parents Package ($157 million over four years) to support pregnant women and babies, including 100 more midwives to support maternity services and additional nurses for more postnatal home visits. Key initiatives include (Effective 1 January 2019):
    • $9.3 million to provide up to 100 more midwives.
    • $7.6 million for the NSW Baby Bundle to provide all new parents with essential items to assist in their child’s early health and development.
    • $7.6 million for additional support to new mums in the first months of their baby’s life, including extra nurse home visits, greater access to virtual home visits and increased services for pregnant women and mothers with severe and complex mental illness.
    • $5 million for research into childhood cancer and other genetic disorders.

 

Community Recreational Facilities

  • $39.2 million over four years to replace and refurbish Police Citizens Youth Clubs (PCYCs). Effective July 2018
  • $30 million to open school playgrounds and sporting facilities for community use on weekends and during school holidays through the Share Our Space program. Effective July 2018
  • $20.0 million reserved from Restart NSW for the creation and upgrade of inclusive playspaces as part of the Everyone Can Play in NSW program. Effective July 2018

 

Other

  • $25 million to tackle childhood obesity. Effective July 2018
  • $24 million to resource Service NSW centres to become “one-stop shops” for people to access more than 40 government rebates. Pilot from July, rollout later 2018.