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Capital funding changes for early childhood ed

15 December 2004

Capital funding changes for early childhood ed

Education Minister Trevor Mallard today announced changes to the way funding is allocated to new or expanding community-based early childhood centres, in order to better target areas of high population growth and areas of need.

“As well, additional funding of $4 million for 2005/06 will also go into the Early Childhood Discretionary Grants Scheme, to bring the total funding available in 2005/06 to $12.8 million. This will provide community groups with greater opportunities to provide early childhood education services that are tailored to meet local needs," Trevor Mallard said.

The scheme provides capital assistance to community groups to establish new or extend existing licensed and chartered early childhood education centres. In particular it targets areas where there are fewer children accessing quality early childhood education such as Maori, Pasifika, low income, and those in isolated communities.

“The Labour-led government is committed to making sure all kiwi kids - regardless of their background - are given the chance to get the right start to life by participating in quality early childhood education. That's because we know it makes a significant difference to the way children develop and achieve later on, “ Trevor Mallard said.

“Under the changes announced today, community groups wanting to establish early childhood centres in the areas of low participation and those in isolated communities will continue to have first priority for funding," Trevor Mallard said.

"However, the three current funding pools – General, Maori and Pasifika – will be amalgamated into one pool. At the same time, areas of high population growth such as Auckland will be included as an additional priority for the allocation of funding from the beginning of 2005,” Trevor Mallard said.

“The changes to the Early Childhood Discretionary Grants Scheme will increase the flexibility of the scheme and will enable closer consideration to be given to the availability of community-based early childhood services throughout the whole country.

“Further consideration will be given to this grants scheme next year to assess the extent to which community needs for early childhood services are being met. "

A fact sheet about government initiatives in early childhood education is attached.

ENDS

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