OPENING THE DOORS TO NEW MACEDON PROJECTS

More kinders and upgraded early years facilities are on the way for Victorian families and their children – including in the Macedon region – thanks to the Andrews Labor Government.

Minister for Early Childhood Education Jenny Mikakos and Member for Macedon Mary-Anne Thomas today announced a major boost for the Woodend Kindergarten which will receive $152,000 through the 2018-19 Children’s Facilities Capital Program to upgrade their outdoor play space.

It is one of more than 50 projects to be funded through this round across Victoria, delivering top class early learning facilities so that children can make the most out of their early years education. The funding is on top of the $200,000 the centre also has received through the recent Pick My Project initiative, with locals voting it a winner.

Support for the kinder comes as the Labor Government announced an ambitious plan to build 785 new kinders and upgrade 170 more if re-elected, as part of its almost $5 billion three-year-old kinder reform.

A re-elected Andrews Labor Government will ensure every Victorian child has access to at least five hours of subsidised three-year-old kinder by 2022, progressively scaled up to 15 hours per week over the next decade

It also represents good news for families struggling with the cost of living. Right now, many are forced to scrimp and save to cover the costs of three-year-old kinder – around $5000 a year for 15 hours – while the vast majority see their kids miss out. But under Labor’s plan, around a quarter of Victorian families will pay nothing at all.

For families with a higher income, the Labor Government will cover 65 per cent of their child’s kindergarten costs, representing a saving of at least $3500 for families whose children attend a standalone kinder.

Macedon locals are also set to reap the benefits of the new Kyneton Men’s Shed, which opened its doors today.

It is a new purpose-built meeting place where they can learn valuable skills, make connections and contribute to their community, which was supported with a grant of $60,000 from the Labor Government through its 2015-16 men’s shed funding round.

This investment has been used to help create the all-new purpose-built facility for local shedders, which provides a functional workshop for local men to get together and work on community projects.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos

“We’ve promised to rollout three-year-old kinder and we’re backing it up, undertaking the biggest early education build our state has ever seen. Only Labor will make sure local kids get the opportunities they deserve.”

“It’s fantastic to see the Kyneton Men’s Shed also open for business, which will provide men with a safe and welcoming space to call their own.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Macedon Mary-Anne Thomas

“Now some of our littlest residents will have the outdoor learning spaces they deserve at Woodend kinder.”

“The new Kyneton Men’s Shed is an incredible asset for our community and will be well loved and well used for years to come.”