Child Care & Preschool Subsidy

Child Care & Preschool Subsidy

The Federal and State Governments offer subsidies for families with children in child care and preschool.

The type of subsidy and the amount you’re eligible for depend on your circumstances. Below is a summary of what’s available, and where you can find more information.

Both the child care subsidy and preschool subsidy are available for eligible children enrolled in any Penrith City Council-owned child care centre or preschool.

On 2 July 2018, the Federal Government brought in a new child care package. We’ve provided a summary below, and the full child care package is available on the  Federal Government’s New Child Care Package website.

  • There is now only 1 Child Care Subsidy (which replaced the previous Child Care Benefit and Child Care Rebate).
  • The Child Care Subsidy is paid directly to services.
  • Parents/ carers must complete the online child care subsidy assessment using your Centrelink online account through myGov.
  • Centrelink will assess eligibility based on their eligibility criteria.
  • There is a  ‘safety net’ designed to provide for some children in vulnerable and disadvantaged situations, as well as those from regional and remote communities.

In January 2017 the State Government introduced the Start Strong program which included increased subsidies for community preschools.

The subsidy allows children in their final year before school to access up to 600 hours of subsidised preschool at just $22 a day. The subsidy is available for up to six hours per day, which means families can access up to three days of preschool per week.

Why 600 hours?

Research shows that children who participate in a quality early childhood education program for at least 600 hours in the year before school are more likely to be socially, cognitively and emotionally ready for school. These benefits continue well into higher levels of education and beyond.