School readiness funding to enhance outcomes in kindergartens
The transition to school from kindergarten is a huge milestone for children and one that kindergarten programs focus on preparing children for. To support kindergarten educators in equipping children for this transition to formal schooling, the Department of Education and Training Victoria has developed school readiness funding.
This school readiness initiative enables services in Victoria offering a funded kindergarten program to access funding for a range of approved programs that have been proven to enhance children’s school readiness.
This school readiness funding menu includes programs that have been selected for their evidence-informed approach to three main areas: communication (language development), wellbeing (social and emotional), and access and inclusion. Choose from programs like the Bonkers Beat Music Program, Positive Parenting Program or Yarn Strong Sista, to name just a few.
School readiness funding: who is eligible?
Whether your service is a funded kindergarten program only or a long day care centre with a funded kindergarten program, you will be eligible receive the school readiness funding.
Approximately one third of eligible kindergartens will receive their funding in 2019, with the funding rolled out over the coming three years. To find out when you will receive your funding, take a look here.
School readiness funding has been designed a permanent ongoing funding to support kindergartens in delivering the highest quality care possible to children transitioning to school. Taking a needs-based approach, that is used in schools, and uses parental education and occupation as a predictor of educational disadvantage, school readiness funding will range from $1000 (for small numbers of children and/or low needs levels) to over $200,000 (high levels of need and/or large numbers of children).
Allocating your school readiness funding
The school readiness funding menu offers programs to support your kindergarten in many different ways, so ensure you carefully consider the needs and gaps in your kindergarten’s approach. The externally validated programs on offer through this funding include:
- 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.
For more information about school readiness funding, head to the Department of Education and Training Victoria website.