Release type: Media Release

Date:

New data: Government slows child care cost increases

Ministers:

Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham
Minister for Education and Training

Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham said new departmental data from the early education and care sector for the 2015 June quarter has highlighted that fees only grew by 3.6 per cent compared to an average annual increase of 7.8 per cent during Labor’s time in office.

 

Minister Birmingham said the Coalition Government’s compliance measures had reduced the growing cost burden for families and taxpayers by capping certain types of hourly fees and streamlining payments to parents who are studying.

 

“Our proposed changes will continue to put downward pressure on the fee growth that spiked under Labor and will provide more relief for the hardest working families,” Minister Birmingham said.

 

“The Coalition is the only party with a plan to deliver the flexible, accessible and affordable child care system that today’s modern families require.

 

“This new data shows families are on average $110 per week out-of-pocket for child care but the Turnbull Government’s reforms will invest an additional $3 billion to support families and parents who most depend upon child care in order to work, or work more.

 

“With the number of children in child care climbing to around 1.5 million last year, it’s clear that families can see the developmental benefits it delivers, but we need to ensure the system is sustainable and accessible. 

 

“Bill Shorten doesn’t even have a child care policy – just a legacy of mistakes that accelerated fee increases. But he is standing in the way of our child care reforms to benefit around one million families.”

 

Labor’s 2008 change to the Child Care Rebate, without a check on what providers could charge, was described by the Productivity Commission report into the sector as having “accelerated” the climb of child care fees (Page 391), meaning families and taxpayers pay more.

 

Average early education and care fee increase (June quarterly data)

Source: Department of Education and Training, June 2015 quarter Early Childhood and Child Care in Summary

 

The Early Childhood and Child Care in Summary (June quarter 2015) report is available at the Department of Education and Training’s website – https://www.education.gov.au/child-care-update