Frequently Asked Questions

We want kindergarten to be as smooth and as easy as possible so we have listed our most often asked questions from parents.

  • When is my child eligable for kindergarten?

    4 Year Old Programs

    Your child must turn four before the 30th April in the year your child is to attend kindergarten. If your child turns four shortly before this date and you are unsure when to send your child to kindergarten, talk to the kindergarten teacher at your preferred kindergarten or call NERPSA on 03 5721 2755.

    3 Year Old Programs

    Your child is eligible for three year old kindergarten if they turn three before the 30th April, however your child must have turned three before they can attend kindergarten.

    It is recommended that children be three by the start of Term 1 in the year they are to attend kindergarten.

  • How do I decide which kindergarten my child should attend?

    There is a difference in the programs offered at each kindergarten. Each kindergarten is unique and each teacher offers their own program (within the National Quality Standards).

    The Open Days are a great way to make a decision about which kindergarten would best suit your child. They provide parents/guardians with the opportunity to see each kindergarten, hear how each program is run, meet the teachers and ask any questions that you may have in order to make an informed decision about kindergarten.

  • Can I visit kindergartens while a session is on?

    Open days are held at each Kindergarten at the commencement of the enrolment period.

    You and your child are encouraged to visit the kindergartens you are interested in having your child attend. If you cannot make the open days, you are welcome to attend at other times, however please be aware that teachers have a duty of care to the children attending each session.

    It is recommended that you phone the kindergarten first to make an allocated time to ensure the teacher is available to speak with you.

  • When should I register my child?

    NERPSA has an open enrolment period from mid May to mid July for the following year.

  • How do I register my child?

    An Enrolment Registration Form needs to be filled out and submitted to NERPSA to register your child. You will receive a letter with a place offer at a later date.

    Please see the enrolment timeline for more information.

  • How are children matched with places?

    NERPSA has put in place Priority of Access guidelines as part of the Enrolment Policy. This outlines how kindergarten places are allocated if there are not enough places available for children wishing to attend a kindergarten. Below outlines the priorities for the funded kindergarten programs in the policy:

    First priority

    • Children who have received funding for a second year of kindergarten for DET.
    • Children who were eligible to attend kindergarten in the previous year but deferred.
    • Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander children or children known to Child Protection.
      Children who hold an eligible concession card.

    Second priority

    • Children who have a sibling that has previously attended the same kindergarten as their preference

    Third priority

    • Ballot
  • When will I know if my child has been accepted to my preferred kindergarten?

    All kindergarten offers are posted out in August of the year prior to the kindergarten year. The letter of offer will be accompanied by an Acceptance Form, a Contract for Payment and an invoice for Term 1 fees (where payment is required). Completed forms are to be returned to NERPSA and payment made into the NERPSA bank account by the specified date to secure your child’s kindergarten place.

    If you do not receive your first choice of kindergarten you can accept an offer of lower preference or choose to be placed on a waiting list at your preferred kindergarten. Any vacancies that arise will be offered to children based on priority of access.

  • When will I know which group my child is in?

    If your child has been offered a place at a Kindergarten which has multiple groups, the group placements are done by the individual Kindergartens after all acceptances have been received.

    The Kindergartens will notify you individually of the group placements by the end of October.

  • Why do I have to pay Term 1 fees?

    A fee payment is required to assist us with the planning of kindergarten programs as it shows you are committed to the place offered.

    If you are eligible for the fees subsidy a payment is not required, however NERPSA needs to site the eligible card in order to secure your child’s place. Please bring it in to the NERPSA office with you when you return your Enrolment Registration Form or forward a copy by mail.

    Please note: In cases of severe hardship being demonstrated, please call and discuss your situation personally with our management staff.

  • What is the kindergarten fee subsidy?

    The kindergarten fee subsidy exists to make funded kindergarten programs affordable for families who hold an eligible concession or visa.

    As a concession or visa holder you are entitled to subsidised fees in the four year old program and some three year old pograms. It is anticipated that there will be no fee payment required.

    You can access the kindergarten fee subsidy by presenting your concession card or visa to the NERPSA office at any time during the year.

  • What are the eligible concessions for the kindergarten fee subsidy?

    If you hold any of the following you are entitled to the fee subsidy:

    • Commonwealth Health Care Card
    • Pensioner Concession Card
    • Department Veteran’s Affairs Gold Card
    • Temporary Protection/Humanitarian Visas 447, 451, 785 or 786
    • Asylum-seeker Bridging Visas A-F
    • Refugee or Special Humanitarian Visas 200-217
    • Child is of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent
    • Child is a triplet or quadruplet
  • Can I use my concession card for 3 year old kindergarten?

    The Victorian Government is investing in kindergarten programs for all three year olds – giving our children an extra year of learning, playing and making friends.

    Kindergarten programs for three year olds are being rolled out across Victoria in stages.

    Within NERPSA, Violet Town Kindergarten will commence 15 hours of funded three year old Kindergarten in 2020. This means that Kindergarten will be free for any child eligible for the fees subsidy.

    All other services will commence funded three year old Kindergarten in 2022. Until this time, there are no subsidies available for three year old programs which are fee for service, that is, fees need to be paid to meet the costs of running the program, paying staff and operational costs.

  • What are the fees?

    2020 fees range from $190 - $230 for 3 year old unfunded programs and $270 - $365 for 3 and 4 year old funded programs.

    Fees for 2021 have not been set as yet.

  • When am I required to pay fees?

    Fees for all kindergartens are to be paid to NERPSA. Term fees are payable before the term begins. Fees will be invoiced, four weeks before the end of each term for the following term. There are four terms in a year.

  • What happens if I do not pay my fees?

    If fees are not paid by due dates, your child may be unable to attend kindergarten. This is unpleasant for all and we encourage you to keep your payments up to date to ensure your child’s eligibility.

    Please note: If a family has outstanding fee payments, siblings will not be offered a kindergarten place for future enrolments until all debts are paid.
  • Is a child care benefit available?

    Under the new Child Care Subsidy which came into effect on 2nd July 2018, there is no longer a service type which allows for a rebate for Kindergarten fees.

  • Are there expected to be kindergarten closures throughout the year?

    There may be sessions lost throughout the year due to public holidays, professional development and staff illness.

    In the case of staff illness, a kindergarten will only be closed when suitably qualified emergency staff cannot be found at short notice. A phone tree is established at each kindergarten and you may receive a call on any kindergarten day. Please have a backup plan in place should this occur.

    Kindergartens will close for one day each year, usually in Term 3 for a professional development day run by NERPSA, with a minimum of one months notice being given. Where possible, kindergarten closures are kept to a minimum for each kindergarten program.

  • Office Hours

    NERPSA office hours are 10.00am to 3.00pm Monday to Friday with other hours open by appointment, however the office may be unattended due to meetings, site visits or events from time to time.

    If unsure about any part of this process, you are welcome to ring NERPSA on 03 5721 2755.