Parents of primary school students in New South Wales are being offered a back-to-school sweetener, with the state government offering vouchers to cover before-and after-school care.
Premier Dominic Perrottet said he hopes the voucher will help ease the pressure on family budgets and “help mums and dads balance work and family life”.
“It also will provide important support for the industry”, he added, saying schools and childcare centres have – like many industries – been under immense pressure in the past few years.
Parents and carers will receive a $500 voucher for every primary school student they are responsible for.
Overall, the program is worth $155 million.
How to apply?
People can apply for the vouchers through the Service NSW app from February 28.
Education Minister Sarah Mitchell said parents would find it a “very simple process”, similar to that used for Active Kids and Creative Kids vouchers.
Customer Services Minister Victor Dominello said the vouchers would be delivered to phones via the same infrastructure as the Dine and Discover vouchers.
How to use it?
Parents and carers will provide the vouchers to their childcare providers for $500 of credit per child.
The vouchers would cover the “parent gap fee” – the money paid by families after the Commonwealth-funded childcare subsidy is applied.
“We also want to make sure that childcare, particularly before and after school, is as affordable and accessible as possible,” Treasurer Matt Kean said.
“In addition, these vouchers will support the before and after school care sector who are doing it tough.”
The vouchers are for before- and after-school care only.
But Mr Dominello urged NSW residents to also continue making use of the Dine and Discover voucher program to support local businesses.