Lisa Chesters MP was today joined by Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen MP to confirm Labor’s commitment to funding preschool for both 3 and 4 year olds.


“Access to affordable preschool and kinder programs should be a priority for any Government.


“Federal and State Labor will work together to guarantee permanent funding for preschool and kinder programs.  This is the biggest investment ever made in early childhood education in Australia,” said Mr Bowen.


“Local teachers and centres have told me that the current cost of three year old kinder is the main barrier when it comes to accessing programs.


“From 2021, every 3 and 4 year old in the Bendigo electorate will be able to access 15 hours of subsidised early childhood education and I know how excited many local families will be about this.


“We know that 90% of a child’s brain development occurs in the first five years of life so it is vital families are given this support to get the best start for their children,” said Ms Chesters.


Labor will also extend the current arrangement for four year olds accessing preschool programs – creating a quality, two-year program that boosts development in the most important years of a child’s development, an investment of an additional $1.75 billion into early education


“The Liberals see education as a cost – that’s why they’ve cut $14 billion from public schools and left preschool funding in limbo. Labor sees it as an investment in our collective future.


“Labor will work in partnership with the states and territories to deliver this important reform, including in setting enrolment and attendance targets, particularly for Indigenous and vulnerable children.


“We’ve made tough and overdue decisions to rein in unfair tax concessions that predominantly benefit the wealthy – including negative gearing reform and dividend imputation reform – so we can fund the priorities that will make a fairer and more successful nation,” said Mr Bowen.


This announcement supports the Victorian State Government’s funding commitment to preschool.


“Kinder is a precious time for our kids to learn, explore and play. Labor is supporting families and building great local kindergartens.


“Only Labor will make sure that Bendigo families have fantastic kinder facilities and make Kinder more accessible,” said Member for Bendigo East, Jacinta Allan MP.