REPORT BACKS CALLS FOR GOVERNMENT TO INVESTIGATE THREE YEAR OLD PRESCHOOL

A new report released today by the Mitchell Institute has added more weight to Labor’s call for the Government to investigate expanding preschool programs to benefit three year olds.

 

The report makes clear that two years of preschool benefits children’s development, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

This comes just two weeks after Kate Ellis addressed the National Press Club about the benefits of quality preschool for three year olds.

It also follows Labor’s election commitment to review the barriers and capacity constraints to universal preschool for three year olds.

“One in five children are starting school behind, and more needs to be done to help them catch-up” Kate Ellis, Shadow Minister for Early Childhood Education and Development said.

 

“There is overwhelming international evidence – including from the UK – about the extra benefits that come from three year olds attending preschool.

 

“Australia is lagging behind other countries. We need to keep improving our early education system to make sure all children get a strong foundation and can go on to achieve their best at school and in life.

 

“Simon Birmingham might claim to pay lip service to the importance of preschool for three year olds, but as minister he’s failed to do anything at all.

 

“It’s time the Government followed the evidence about the importance of quality, play-based early learning, especially for the most vulnerable children.”

 

Labor introduced universal access to preschool for four year olds in 2009, with 95 per cent of children now attending preschool in the year before school.

 

MONDAY, 31 OCTOBER 2016