The Y offers free 3-year-old kindergarten at all our long day care centres in Victoria. Find out what this means for your child and be one of the first to secure a place. Combine the educational benefits of 3-year-old kindergarten program with a flexible day care service.
Why is 3-year-old kindergarten being offered?
The Y is part of the Victorian Government’s rollout of funded three-year-old kindergarten. This plan is investing almost $5 billion over ten years so that children across the state will have access to two years of funded kindergarten programs.
Research shows that structured quality play-based early learning supports young children’s development and provides benefits into school and adult years. The government reform recognises the importance of this and the 3-year-old funded kindergarten rollout will help provide Victorian children with these advantages.
The funding is provided directly to kindergartens and supports additional hours for a qualified early childhood teacher.
What does this mean for you?
You will be able to access more 3-year-old kindergarten positions in your area which previously weren’t available. The government funded kindergarten will help centres service the cost of children attending kinder. This helps keep your fees low.
Benefits of 3-year-old kindergarten
Structured play-based learning in kindergarten provides long lasting developmental benefits. Here are 10 benefits of participating in a 3-year-old kindergarten program:
- Evidence demonstrates that 2 years of kinder are better than 1 year.
- Neuroscience research show that early learning is vital for optimal development.
- Age-appropriate play-based learning supports your child’s holistic development. This is facilitated by learning through play, risk-based play, nature play, indoor/outdoor play and messy play.
- Social, cognitive, and emotional development as well as communication and teamwork skills are enhanced.
- Kindergarten teachers are trained to identify and support children who have additional needs.
- Children learn about science, maths, literature, and environmental awareness by participating in play-based learning activities.
- Creative and innovative thinking is enhanced through imaginative play, construction and art and music activities.
- Maths and logic skills are developed through structured games and play.
- Prepares children for 4-year-old kinder the following year.
- High-quality kindergarten program tailored to child’s individual needs and interests.
3-year-old kindergarten programs
3-year-old kindergarten programs are available as a part of long-day care services or standalone programs. Long day care kinder is often called integrated kindergarten as the kinder program takes place within the same early learning childcare service and facility. Standalone kindergarten programs are also known as sessional kinder, which is where children attend on specific days and times.
The Y provides integrated 3-year-old kindergarten programs at all our 18 early learning centre locations across Melbourne and Victoria as well as sessional kindergarten for 3-year-olds at four of these locations: Derrimut, Lightning Reef, Mernda and Truganina South.
The Y 3-year-old kinder program is delivered by bachelor qualified early childhood kindergarten teachers. Whether you attend our sessional or integrated kinder services your child will receive the same high quality, government approved kindergarten program.
The caring Y early learning centre staff are here to support you and your child.
The Y integrated kinder difference
- Our centre services are open between 6:30am and 6:30pm.
- The Y kinder program runs for 40 weeks during the school term, from 9:00am to 2:00pm Monday to Friday. You can choose which kinder day suits you and your child best.
- Drop off and pick up your child any time during the opening times.
- One easy drop off and pick up - siblings are able to attend the same centre for child care or 4-year-old kinder.
- We provide childcare for 52 weeks of the year, closed only for public holidays (or COVID-19 restrictions)
- Ideal for active parents and working families.
- You pay the standard price per day for early learning childcare. There is no extra charge for your child to attend the Y 3-year-old kindergarten sessions.
- All meals are provided for the day. The cost of meals is included in the daily fee. Meals are nutritious and made on site. Dietary and allergy requirements for your child will be catered to.
Who is eligible
Your child needs to turn 3 or 4 before April 30 to enrol on 3 or 4-year-old kinder for that year.
Kinder fees and Free Kinder
Sessional kinder fees
Kindergarten fee subsidy
Families attending sessional kindergarten who are eligible for the kindergarten fee subsidy do not pay any fees.
Families can access a sessional kindergarten service at low or no cost if the child:
- is Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander
- is a triplet or quadruplet
- is covered by a Health Care Card
- holds an eligible concession card or refugee, humanitarian or asylum seeker visa, or their parent or guardian does.
Integrated kinder fees
The fees for integrated three-year-old kindergarten are charged at the standard daily rate for the service, and are specific to each site location in Victoria. The fee is the same whether you drop your child off for the 5-hour kindergarten program between 9:00am and 2:00pm, or whether your child attends the centre longer hours between the opening times of 6:30am and 6:30pm.
You can also receive Free Kinder funding for integrated kindergarten. View your preferred kindergarten location page to see the fees.
Childcare subsidy for integrated kinder
The Child Care Subsidy (CCS) is available to be applied to these integrated three-year-old kindergarten daily fees. This subsidy is provided by the Australian Federal government. There is further information about eligibility for the CCS subsidy on the Services Australia website. You can apply for this subsidy using your Centrelink online account through myGov.
3-year-old kinder hours
The Y provides up to 15 free hours per week of funded 3-year-old kindergarten at each location in Victoria.
There are different sessional hours available. The Y enrolment support team provide information about sessional kindergarten hours and discuss options that would suit you best.
Our 3-year-old kinder program operates between 9am and 2pm each day. Children attending integrated 3-year-old kinder are required to attend 1 day per week.
You can choose which kinder day suits you and your child best. You can also drop off your child at our day care service any time between our opening hours of 6:30am and 6:30pm.
The Y enrolment support team can advise you of the daily 3-year-old kinder centre fees for your preferred location. Please submit an enquiry using the form below on this page.
'No Jab, No Play' is Victorian Government legislation that requires all children to be fully vaccinated unless they have a medical exemption to be enrolled in childcare or kindergarten in Victoria. Parents or guardians are responsible for providing an Immunisation History Statement from the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) and this must be provided within the two months prior to the child starting at the centre. The statement must show that the child is up to date with all vaccinations that are due for their age, or they are able to receive, as per the National Immunisation Program.
Enrolment documents required
Child’s identity documents; birth certificate, passport must be provided when enrolling.
Find a 3-year-old kindergarten program
Find 3-year-old kinder at a Y Victoria early learning centre. Type your preferred suburb name or post code in the search bar below to find the centres closest to you.
Register for 3-year-old kinder
Find the best 3-year-old kinder to suit your child and family. Our enrolment support team can assess your needs and provide more information about services and facilities specific to the centre near you, as well hours, timetables, fees, and the application forms for 2023 and 2024 Kindergarten. We can also arrange centre tours, or kindergarten virtual tours with video.
Secure your child’s kinder position for 2023. Submit an enquiry and our enrolment support team will be in touch.
The Y Kindergarten programs are government approved and funded
The Kinder Tick logo has been implemented by the Victorian government to help families find a funded, approved kindergarten program that is led by a qualified teacher and complies with the government National Quality Framework to provide play-based learning benefits for your child. Look for the Kinder Tick.