Universal access to early childhood education will continue

Thursday 25 February 2016


All states and territories have now signed up to the National Partnership Agreement on Universal Access to Early Childhood Education for 2016 and 2017.

“Under this agreement all states and territories have agreed to support preschool programmes in all settings – whether that be the local state government-run preschool or a preschool within a long day care programme,” Minister Birmingham said.

Universal access to early childhood education ensures that a quality, early childhood education programme is available for all children in the year before full-time school (often referred to as preschool or kindergarten). The programme is to be delivered by a qualified early childhood teacher for 600 hours a year, with a focus on participation by Indigenous children, vulnerable and disadvantaged children.

Research shows that participating in a quality early childhood education programme can significantly increase positive educational and life outcomes for children, especially those from more disadvantaged backgrounds. The universal access initiative aims to improve participation in quality early childhood education for all Australian children.

Further information is available about Universal Access and a copy of the announcement media release.