The Australian Government conducts strategic planning, inquiries and evaluations to ensure early childhood policies continue to meet the needs of children and families.
On this page:
National vision for early childhood education and care
National Cabinet has asked federal, state and territory education and early years ministers to develop a national long-term vision for early childhood education and care. The vision will support parents’ workforce participation and children’s education and development outcomes.
Find out more about the national vision
Early Years Strategy
The Australian Government is developing an Early Years Strategy to shape its vision for the future of Australia’s children and their families.
The Early Years Strategy will create a whole-of-government approach to the early years. It will set out the Australian Government’s vision for the future of our children and their families.
Find out more about the Early Years Strategy
ACCC price inquiry
The Australian Government has directed the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to hold an inquiry into early childhood education and care prices.
Find out more about the ACCC price inquiry
Productivity Commission inquiry
The Australian Government has tasked the Productivity Commission with undertaking an inquiry into Australia’s early childhood education and care system.
The findings of the ACCC price inquiry will feed into this inquiry.
Find out more about the Productivity Commission inquiry
Inclusion Support Program review
The department has commissioned Deloitte Access Economics to review the Inclusion Support Program (ISP). The review will examine access to, affordability of, and quality of ISP services, and consider future program arrangements.
Find out more about the Inclusion Support Program review
In Home Care review
The department has commissioned PricewaterhouseCoopers to review the In Home Care (IHC) program. The review will examine access to, affordability of, and quality of IHC services, and consider future program arrangements.
Find out more about the In Home Care review
Child Care Package evaluation
Between 2017 and 2021, the Australian Institute of Family Studies (AIFS) evaluated the Child Care Package.
AIFS collected and analysed a range of information to examine how the package has impacted providers, services and families.
The Early Monitoring Report and Child Care Package Evaluation Final Report are available on the AIFS website.
The Australian Government published a response to the evaluation in 2022.
The Nous Group independently reviewed the Universal Access National Partnership (UANP) for the Australian and state and territory governments.
The findings showed an increase in community awareness of the importance of children taking part in a quality preschool program in the year before school.
Child Care Package audit
In 2019, the Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) undertook an audit of the Child Care Package. The audit objective was to assess the effectiveness of the design and governance of the package.
Read the report on the ANAO website
Jobs for Families Child Care Package legislation
In 2015 and 2016, the Australian Government responded to two Senate Committee inquiries into the new legislation for the Jobs for Families Child Care Package:
Read the Australian Government Response to the Senate Committee Inquiry Report 2015
Read the Australian Government Response to the Senate Committee Inquiry Report 2016
Productivity Commission inquiry
In 2014, the Productivity Commission looked into future options for child care and early childhood learning.
The Productivity Commission report was released in 2015.
The Jobs for Families Child Care Package was released in response to the report as part of the 2015–16 Budget.