Baillieu’s lack of funding affecting Jan Juc Kinder

Three-year-old children in Jan Juc will have less access to kinder thanks to the Baillieu Government’s lack of investment in kindergartens, Shadow Minister for Children and Young Adults Jenny Mikakos said today.

Ms Mikakos and Member for Western Victoria
Gayle Tierney spoke with staff and parents at Jan Juc Kindergarten about the
impact of this lack of investment.

“The Baillieu Government has failed to invest
a single dollar in this year’s State Budget to upgrade existing kinders or
build new ones despite spiralling demand, and Jan Juc families are paying the
price,” Ms Mikakos said.

“The Jan Juc Kindergarten management is
trying its level best to accommodate three-year-olds, but is simply not getting
the support needed from the Baillieu Government.

“Now only 40 three-year-old children will be
able to access only one kinder session a week – a reduction of up to 25 places.

“If the State Government had provided funding
in this year’s state budget then kindergartens would be able to expand their
buildings to accommodate both three and four year old programs.

 “The benefits of kindergarten programs have previously been recognised by both state
and federal governments in the development of children and setting them up for the
best start to life.

“That is why each state agreed, in conjunction with the Federal Government, to the National Partnership Agreement to expand kindergarten hours – an agreement that the Baillieu Government has only paid lip service to.

“As a result of the Baillieu Government’s failure to invest in kindergartens, the development of children in Jan Juc will be compromised.”

Ms Tierney said the scaling back of the three-year-old
kinder program in Jan Juc was a shocking outcome.

“The Baillieu Government’s mismanagement of
this issue is now hitting home for dozens of parents,” Ms Tierney said.

“The management at Jan Juc Kindergarten has
been left with no choice but to cut back its popular three-year-old program
because it simply doesn’t have enough room to accommodate the rise in demand.

“Mr Baillieu must stop ignoring the growth
facing kindergartens otherwise Jan Juc might have to cancel its three-year-old
kinder program altogether.”