Funding bonus for Maffra kindergarten

Glassford Kindergarten at Maffra will be better placed to deliver concurrent sessions and achieve universal access for all four-year-olds from 2013 following the announcement of $299,700 in State Government funding for a kindergarten extension project.

Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, today announced three local early childhood services in East Gippsland have been successful in receiving funding.

“This is great news for children in Maffra as well as other regions of East Gippsland, who will benefit from this investment into their education well into the future.

“I am especially proud that local services have received much needed funding to help increase their capacity,” said Mr Bull.

Other successful centres in East Gippsland to receive funding were Orbost Preschool with a grant of $166,400, for a $416,000 project, and Swifts Creek Kindergarten with a grant of $83,071 for a $102,380 project.

Representative for UnitingCare Gippsland, Mrs Sue Grogan-Williams, said “this funding will provide a multi-purpose facility that will fulfil the requirements for the kindergarten to provide 15 universal hours access, as well as enable us to continue working in partnership with other local children’s programs such as playgroups, occasional child care and offering kindergarten to three year olds.”

The funding, which can be used to upgrade facilities or develop integrated children’s services hubs, is a combination of state and National Partnership funding, incorporating the 2011-12 $26 million grants round, money brought forward from the recently announced $50 million grants round and $4.4 million in internal departmental funds.

Minister for Children and Early Childhood Development, Wendy Lovell, said the Victorian Coalition Government was committed to recognising early childhood as an important tier of education.

“The early childhood years are vital,” Ms Lovell said.

“We know that 95 per cent of a child’s brain development happens by the age of five, and a good quality early childhood education will give them a great foundation for their primary, secondary and tertiary education, and for their future work life.

“Because of this, every application that met funding criteria has been funded, by bringing forward money from the recently announced $50 million grants round.

“This will ensure that funding is on the ground and construction starts as soon as possible,” said Ms Lovell.

“We’ve allocated $80.4 million to Children’s Capital Grants in just 18 months, and we’re looking forward to seeing the next round of applications.”