INCLUSIVE KINDERS WELCOME KIDS OF ALL ABILITIES

Even more Victorian kinders will get new equipment to be more inclusive for children with extra needs, thanks to the Andrews Labor Government.

Member for Macedon, Mary-Anne Thomas, today visited the New Gisborne Goodstart Early Learning to help launch the second round of the equipment stream of the Inclusive Kindergartens Facilities Program, with kinders in the Macedon Ranges eligible for a part of up to $2.4 million in funding.

Local governments, not-for-profit service providers and schools in the Macedon Ranges are encouraged to apply for grants that will make their early years facilities more accessible for children of all abilities.

Up to $10,000 is available to buy inclusive education equipment, such as moveable wheelchair-access ramps or adjustable tables and chairs.

Grants of up to $200,000 are also available for kinders in the Macedon Ranges to upgrade buildings and playgrounds to make them more inclusive through the program’s $4 million buildings and playgrounds stream. Applications for this grant closes on 30 April.

The Inclusive Kindergartens Facilities Program is part of the Labor Government’s $19 million investment in initiatives to make early childhood services more inclusive for all children. Victorian families are benefiting from the Labor Government’s $202.1 million Education State Early Childhood Reform Plan, announced in the 2017/18 Victorian Budget.

The plan recognises the importance of providing strong support in early childhood, so kids are ready for kinder, ready for school and ready for life.

Applications for the Inclusive Kindergartens Facilities Program can be made online at schoolbuildings.vic.gov.au.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Early Childhood Education, Jenny Mikakos

“We want every child in every community to be able to attend a great local kinder – and part of this is making sure more kinders are accessible.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Macedon, Mary-Anne Thomas

“We’re helping kinders all across the Macedon Ranges become more inclusive, because all kids deserve access to an enriching early childhood education”.

“The Andrews Labor Government recognises that providing high-quality, inclusive early childhood education is vital in giving every child the best start in life.”