Childcare solutions: Nannies and means testing need safeguards
Sydney Morning Herald - July 4, 2014

A single means-tested government payment to parents for formal, family-based and even nanny-delivered childcare makes sense on the face of it. A Productivity Commission report due this month will argue for just such a scheme by telling parents what they already know. It is often too hard...

Childcare fees growing like tots
The Australian - July 4, 2014

IN an era when families in our largest cities struggle to live on $150,000 a year and many pay $40,000 or more in childcare fees, any push to means test access to the childcare rebate of $7500 a year needs to be treated with caution. As a rule, means testing of government benefits should...

Most children think a mother who works less than 24 hours a week and a father who works less than 44 hours a week is "about right"
Courier Mail - Laura Chalmerspeter Hall - July 4, 2014

CHILDREN don't like it when their parents' work has impacts on their home life, they don't want their parents staying back late at work and they can sense when it is making Mum or Dad stressed. That's the view of Australian children when it comes to their working parents. New research by the…

Fears for family day care as funding is cut
NT News - Christopher Walsh - July 4, 2014

Federal cuts to family day care funding will force local child care providers to close their doors or increase already high costs to parents in the area, say local providers. Heather Havens, director of Darwin Family Day Care, says Abbott Government cuts to administrative funding could place...

The preschool gender gap hurting Australian girls
Women's Agenda - Lisa Bryant - July 3, 2014

What is surprising is that in Australia there is also a significant gender educational disparity - especially in access to preschool education. The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has recently released indicators that show that 3.4% fewer girls than boys attended a preschool…

Hornsby Council to look at privatising its childcare services
Sydney Morning Herald - Heath Gilmore - July 3, 2014

A Sydney council is investigating whether to privatise its childcare centres, reigniting concerns that local authorities are looking to exit the sector. Hornsby mayor Steve Russell has announced that his council was reviewing its operation of four childcare facilities after an unnamed private operator...

Childcare means test affects participation, Chris Bowen told
The Australian - Patricia Karvelas - July 3, 2014

LABOR'S Treasury spokesman Chris Bowen has admitted he looked at putting a means test on the childcare rebate when in government but was given advice that it would adversely affect women's work participation. But Mr Bowen has also said Labor is prepared to consider any proposal for...

Jumbled mess: spending up 300 per cent for no return
The Australian - Judith Sloane - July 3, 2014

HERE'S a quiz: what's something on which the government can increase real spending by more than 300 per cent and get virtually nothing in return? The answer is childcare. In 2000, the government handed out $900 million in childcare subsidies. Last year, the figure was $6.5 billion...

Labor has seized on reports the Federal Government is considering simplifying the childcare system with a single payment to cover nannies
Courier Mail - Jason Tin - July 3, 2014

ALMOST 130,000 Queensland families will be hit by the Abbott Government's changes to the Child Care Benefit, Labor will today claim. Of the top ten Australian electorates with the greatest number of families accessing the benefit, five are located in Queensland, with Rankin topping the list at...

Juggling jobs, children and a working life
The Australian - Nicola Berkovic - July 3, 2014

ANGIE Phillips places people in jobs for a living and knows that work is about far more than just an income. But faced with soaring childcare costs for her two small children, she and her carpenter husband Clive have both considered giving up their jobs to look after the children. The couple...

Childcare may be expensive, but it's worth it in the long run
The Conversation - Susan Kreig - July 3, 2014

With the Productivity Commission Report into Early Learning and Childcare due this month and ABS data on the subject released last week, the cost of childcare is in the spotlight again. However, highlighting the dominance of cost, rather than considering its overall benefits to individual...

Govt keeping options open on childcare
NEWS.com.au - July 2, 2014

THE future of the childcare system remains unclear with the Abbott government leaving the door open for means testing of rebates. THE government is expected to receive the Productivity Commission draft report into child care and early childhood learning this month, with the final...

Time for childcare rebate to cover cost of nannies
Women's Agenda - Angela Priestley - July 2, 2014

Regular childcare is great – if you work standard office hours, can find a position close to your home or office, work no more than two days a week, have less than three kids and can afford the fees. For everyone else, we need a range of options that can actually meet the flexible working...

Parents' group slams Productivity Commission proposal for means-tested childcare
The Australian - Patricia Karvelas - July 2, 2014

THE PEAK body representing Australian parents has described a proposal for childcare payments to be means-tested as a "kick in the guts." It comes after The Australian exclusively reported that the nation's childcare system faces a significant shake-up, with a draft Productivity Commission...

Push to allow subsidies for nannies as childcare means test in frame
The Australian - Patricia Karvelas - July 2, 2014

THE nation's childcare system faces a significant shake-up, with a draft Productivity Commission report suggesting families be able to access one simplified, means-tested payment that would cover the use of nannies. The report - to be delivered to the Abbott government this month - argues...