Does my child have to attend kindergarten? No. Kindergarten is the non-compulsory precursor to schooling in Western Australia. Whilst your child does not have to attend Kindergarten, it is highly recommended. Learning programs are based on children’s interests with a focus on social, emotional, literacy, numeracy and physical development. Pre-primary is the first compulsory year of schooling in WA. If your child does not attend Kindy, they will go straight into Pre-primary the following year.
What age does my child need to be to attend s Community Kindy? All Community Kindergartens offer a Four-Year-Old program. This is for children that are four or will turn four by the 30th June in the year they are attending. As mentioned above, Kindergarten is not compulsory in Western Australia, however most families send their children to Kindergarten to learn valuable skills and to ease the transition into the first compulsory year of school which is Pre-Primary.
Is it expensive to attend Community Kindergarten? No. Just like public primary schools, our kindergartens request a voluntary contribution for each child as set by the Department of Education. Current amount is $60.00 per year. Additional costs, just like other schools, may include excursions, incursions and stationery, depending on the program set by your kindy. The parent committee hold fundraising events throughout the year, which are a fun and rewarding way to get involved in your kindy. This fundraising helps to ensure our kindys are very well resourced. You can contact your Community Kindergarten to find out more.
When can I enrol my child? If we have vacancies, you can enrol at any time of the year. However, to plan for teaching staff and resourcing, initial enrolments are submitted to the Department of Education early in Term 3 for children commencing the following year. You should submit your completed enrolment form as soon as possible as there are limited places. You can obtain the enrolment form directly from your the website or ask us via email.
Will my child learn the curriculum? Yes. Community Kindergartens are required to deliver the same curriculum (The Early Years Learning Framework) as every on-site public Kindergarten. It is the way the curriculum is delivered that sets Community Kindergartens apart. We have a strong focus on 'play-based’ learning and developing a life-long love of learning. Through engaging, play-based activities children build fundamental skills in socialising, communication, emotional development, problem-solving and motor skills. Literacy and numeracy skills are intentionally built into innovative and engaging ‘play’ so the children find the learning fun and purposeful.
Will my child get into the local Primary School the following year? It is a common misconception that if your child attends the Community Kindergarten, instead of the Kindergarten at your local school, that they may not be accepted into Pre-Primary at that school the following year. This is not the case. If you live within the catchment area of your local Primary School, you will be given the same opportunity to enrol as any other child that lives in the area.
Are the teachers qualified? Yes! All Community Kindy teachers are employed by the Department of Education and are employed based on the same selection criteria (qualifications and experience) as in public, school-based kindergartens. Our teachers passion, dedication and skill in delivering the curriculum through play-based learning, together with our spacious, purpose-built facilities are what sets our kindys apart!
I have older siblings, how can I manage the two drop-offs at different locations? We have start and finish times that are staggered from the local Primary Schools. This is specifically to make it easier for families with siblings to be able to manage the school drop-offs and pick-ups. For parents that are working longer hours, some Out-of-School-Hours Care Providers are able to drop off and pick up your child from Kindy. The great thing about Community Kindy’s is that we can be flexible and we are willing to work with families to meet their needs. Contact us directly if you wish to discuss how you will be able to manage the drop-off and pick-up times for your children.
How many children will be in my child’s class? The maximum number of children in each group is 20. There will always be a Teacher and an Education Assistant in attendance and each Kindy has a ‘Parent Roster’ to encourage parents or guardians to participate and assist with the learning activities. This structure allows teachers to have more one-on-one contact with each child as well as offering an inclusive environment for children experiencing various learning challenges.
We live outside the catchment area. Can I still enrol my child? We do accept out of boundary enrolments. Please contact your Kindy directly to find out if there are current vacancies.
Will my child find it difficult to adjust when he/she starts Pre-primary at a regular school? Based on feedback from parents, and our own research, we find that Community Kindy kids settle into regular school remarkably well. We focus on developing social skills and we gradually prepare our children for their Pre-primary transition. Children are excellent at making new friends and this change can also help to build their resilience. By going to a different kindergarten, many parents feel lucky that their child has the opportunity to make double the friends. There are generally a handful of students (if not more) attending the linked school for Pre-primary where those strong kindy friendships can develop.
What days of the week will my Child Attend Kindy? Your child will attend Community Kindergarten either 5 days per fortnight.
How much involvement will I be able to have with my child’s learning? Research shows that children who have parents that are actively involved and supportive in their early education have all-round better outcomes as they grow. It is not compulsory to participate in the running of the Community Kindy, however the ‘community’ kindy concept relies heavily on parental support. You can be involved in many ways and on many levels - its all up to you and what you want to make of it for the benefit of your child. A committee comprising of a parent body is required for the kindergartens to operate.
Does My Child Have to Be Immunised to attend Community Kindy? The West Australian government introduced new immunisation requirements for enrolment into child care services, pre-kindergarten and kindergarten which will be applicable to kindy kids commencing in 2020 onwards. Our community kindergartens are bound to abide by the guidelines set out in this document from the Department of Health, WA. In summary these requirements mean that we may only enrol a child:
whose AIR Immunisation History Statement is dated no more than two months old and is ‘up to date’; or
who is following an approved catch-up schedule as indicated on the child’s AIR Immunisation History Form that is dated no more than six months old; or
who has a valid immunisation certificate issued or declared by the Chief Health Officer; or
if the child is exempt because of particular family circumstances.
Please contact us if you need clarification on these requirements.