Your end of year child care checklist
Your end of year child care checklist
2019 is just around the corner, so now’s the time to prepare for a whole new year of child care, or make a smooth transition to big school. To help you get organised, here are some things for the to-do list.
1. Be ready to begin child care
If your child is starting child care for the first time in January, then get in touch with your service provider before the end of the year to make sure all the paperwork and start dates are in place. It's a good idea to meet with your new carer to discuss routines, what your child needs to bring, and to raise any concerns or queries.
Aside from the practicalities, it's also important to prepare your child emotionally for their first day in care. To do this, the Raising Children Network recommends that several weeks before they start, you:
- Ask the service provider for a copy of their daily schedule and make this your child's daily routine at home by following the service's lunch, play and nap times.
- Find out who your child's main carer or educator will be. Try to get a photo of them to show your child and mention them by name to build a sense of familiarity.
- Make short visits to the service so your child can get used to the child care setting, carers and toy collection.
- Talk positively about the service, the people and the activities. It helps to read or tell happy stories about starting child care and making friends.
2. Claim the Child Care Subsidy
Another very important thing is the Child Care Subsidy, which has replaced the Child Care Benefit and Child Care Rebate. If you are a new family using child care for the first time, you need to establish whether you're eligible for the Subsidy, and if so, complete a new claim form. For details about how to claim the Child Care Subsidy, click here.
Also, the No Jab, No Pay policy continues under the new scheme, so your child will need to fully be vaccinated, or on a catch-up schedule, to be eligible for the Subsidy.
3. Re-enrol for 2019
If your child is returning to the same centre, you may need to re-enrol them to ensure they have a place in the New Year. This is an opportunity to book different days, if necessary, and if you haven't heard from your service provider, then follow-up with them to ensure your paperwork is in order.
4. Update your Child Care Subsidy information
If your child is continuing to attend approved care, it's important that your Child Care Subsidy details are up-to-date. If your circumstances have changed, then you need to log on to Centrelink via myGov and tell the government about:
- Your child starting school next year
- Changes to you or your partner's activity details or income
- Changes to your care arrangements or personal circumstances
- Your new address
If you are changing child care services, you'll need to confirm your child's enrolment details online.
5. Check for any room changes
Your child may be going into a new room come January, so check with your early childhood service about any changes to facilities, routines or procedures you should be aware of. It's worth visiting the new classroom ahead of time and discussing your child's particular needs with the teacher, for example, if they have an allergy or are a preschooler requiring a nappy change table.
6. Prepare for school
If your child is making the move to big school, then you have a bit of parent homework!
- Speak with your early childhood education and care provider about the transition and, if applicable, complete paperwork for the return of your bond.
- If you need vacation care, check whether your service provides this and book a place.
- Provide the service with your address for any forwarded correspondence, and make sure you collect your child's reports and artwork before they finish up.
- Share your contact details with any child care friends, especially if they're going to the same school, so that you can organise holiday play dates.
- Double-check your school orientation pack and make sure you have everything in order before school starts, including your child’s uniform and school supplies.
- Say 'thanks' to your educators for the great start they've given your preschooler.
7. Book your babysitter
Last but not least, summer is the season to be social! This means lots of parents are looking for a child-free outing, so it pays to book your babysitter in advance.
You may have a trusted teenager, relative or neighbour you can count on for care, however, agencies are a great way to engage a reliable, screened and professional babysitter, and to make things easy, our online booking service connects you with reputable agencies, so you can tick 'babysitter' off the list and get into that festive feeling.
This child care article was last reviewed or updated on Wednesday, 22 July 2020
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