Early Childhood Education and Care | Australian Greens

Early Childhood Education and Care

All Australian families are entitled to access high quality, affordable childcare when they need it.

Principles

The Australian Greens believe that:

  1. Care for children is the responsibility of society as a whole. The quality of care received by babies and children produces flow-on effects for the whole of their lives and the community.
  2. The needs of Australian families are diverse. All children should be able to access high-quality childcare and early childhood educational experiences.
  3. Positive, interactive learning, educational and socialisation opportunities offered by childcare can benefit children and the community by assisting a smooth transition to formal education.
  4. Investment in early childhood education reduces costs associated with poor school attendance and social disengagement in later years.
  5. All carers of children should have the opportunity to re-enter or maintain their engagement in the workforce.
  6. Childcare should be a not-for-profit service.
  7. People working in the childcare sector should be fairly remunerated for the work they do.
  8. Families should have diversity in their choice of childcare alternatives within easy access, including via public transport, of the home and workplace. 

Aims

The Australian Greens want:

  1. Increased and targeted funding for community-based and not-for-profit child care facilities, especially in areas of high unmet demand or growth and areas of high socio-economic needs.
  2. Increased access to publicly funded childcare for carers of children on low and middle incomes who are working or undertaking training or education.
  3. Reform of the Federal Government support for childcare to ensure improved affordability of childcare for low and middle income families, including parents and carers who are studying.
  4. Pay rates and working conditions for childcare works that reflect the skill level required in, and the importance of, childcare work.
  5. Greater assistance for a national planning system for childcare services, including a national demand model for childcare service planning.
  6. Improved professional development opportunities and professional standards for childcare workers.
  7. Comprehensive and transparent reporting requirements across the childcare sector.
  8. Increased financial assistance for childcare centre programs that offer flexible hours and occasional childcare in what has become an increasingly flexible workplace.
  9. Improved access for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families to early childcare services.