Education, Uncategorised, Useful tools
How much is child care?
10 August, 2021
If you’re wondering how much to pay for child care or, more importantly, how to afford child care, listen up. We break down everything from what child care services actually are to what will be included in your fees, and share the strategies and assistance available to help you budget.
How much are childcare fees at Edge?
Child care fees differ from centre to centre depending on the location. Our fees can be found at the top of each centre page on our website. Find a centre near you to view their fees and inclusions.
What are child care services?
Whether you work, your partner works, or you’d simply prefer to put your child into child care for a portion of their week, it’s important to know what’s available when it comes to child care services. The four types of child care covered by the Child Care Subsidy are:
- Centre-based Childcare and Kindergarten: These purpose-built centres for early childhood education and care can operate privately, by local councils or community organisations, and can offer all-day or part-time care for your child – often, with developmental programs included. At Edge, for example, we follow the Queensland Government Approved Kindergarten program in our Centres where an Early Childhood Teacher, or ECT, delivers the program. We also include a research-backed Active Early Learning Curriculum, meals and nutritional education, and flexible room routines to support your child each and every day.
- Family Day Care: A network of experienced carers and educators who offer care in their own homes. While family day care is primarily for children who haven’t yet started school, they can also care for children up to 12 years old. Family day care can be a great option for families who need care outside of normal working hours, and even overnight.
- Outside School Hours Care: These care services are offered before and after school hours and during school holidays, and are for children who normally attend school. They are usually hosted at your child’s school, though may be run by a private provider, and are best suited to parents who work typical office hours.
- In-Home Care: Be it a nanny (live-in or live-out) or au pair (a live-in, foreign national on a cultural exchange), in-home care is a flexible form of care perfect for families who can’t access other mainstream child care options – particularly families who are geographically isolated or have complex family needs.
It’s important to know that early learning centres and childcare centres are quite different, despite both being examples of centre-based day care.
At early learning centres like Edge, we work closely with the children from nursery age right through to kindergarten and record daily observations in the child’s learning journey book. Once a child reaches kindergarten, their lessons become more advanced and follow our kindergarten program.
While we do still prefer a play-based approach to learning, our Edge educators also take time to notice children’s interests and structure their learning around them, posing questions and expanding their learning through discovery of new topics and new interests. That’s the ethos behind our inquiry-based approach.
What is included in the Child Care Fees?
While each childcare centre will have very different inclusions, at Edge, the following services are included in our fees:
- Nutritious meals catering to all dietary requirements
- Sunscreen, nappies, and wipes
- Hat, water bottle, backpack and wet bag or t-shirt
- Queensland Government Approved Kindergarten Program
- Active Early Learning Curriculum
- Bachelor Qualified Educators
- Updates throughout the day via Storypark App
- Annual documentation of child’s learning journey
How to afford child care?
While the child care subsidy is available to many families, fees can be tricky to budget for – even with government help. The cost will depend on which option you choose; generally, any kind of in-home or private care will be more expensive, while group care will be less so. Of course, it is all a small price to pay to cultivate your child’s development. If you find you need to save money in other areas in order to afford child care, consider:
- Making a realistic budget
- Tracking your spending to find the leaks
- Investing your spare cash to see it grow right before your eyes
- Negotiating a lower price on essentials like insurance, bills, etc.
- Smoothing your bills and paying them fortnightly rather than monthly or quarterly
- Planning and prepping your meals at the start of the week – no more takeaway cravings!
When it comes to saving on your child care costs, it’s worth finding out more about how to apply for the child care subsidy.
What is the Child Care Subsidy (CCS)?
Since 2018, the Australian Government’s CCS has been in place to help make child care more affordable for Aussie families. Edge Early Learning is a CCS-approved childcare service, meaning part of your out-of-pocket costs will be covered. To be eligible, you must care for a child who is 13 or younger who is not attending secondary school, use an approved childcare service (like Edge!), be responsible for paying the childcare fees and meet residency and immunisation requirements. If you’re looking to apply for the childcare subsidy, be sure to apply early – before your child’s start date – through the MyGov website. Once you are enrolled with Edge, our team will lodge the application and will be able to give more information about your entitlements.
Edge Early Learning provides children with a holistic learning experience and inquiry-based approach to trigger curiosity and build key developmental skills. If you would like to find out more, contact one of our friendly staff or book a tour of your local Edge Early Learning Centre today!