Community views sought on child care

20 February 2013

A panel of community members will help inform a future decision about Council’s role in child care.

Mayor Stephen Hartney said Council’s decision last year to abandon a tender process to lease its two child care centres and further explore its options for child care has presented an opportunity to meaningfully engage the community on a number of key policy questions.

“If there is a role for Council either in the direct provision of child care or supporting other models of child care, we need to understand what the role would be and whether Council’s role includes providing additional subsidies to services.

“Engaging the community in a dialogue about child care will inform community understanding of the issues, gauge the wider community’s views on Council’s role in child care and give Council confidence to make an informed decision in the best interests of the community.

“Panel members will be recruited by an independent party to form a representative sample of the Bayside community and will be paid a small stipend in recognition of their time.

“The views of the wider community will also be sought through a series of workshops and briefings and an online forum,” Cr Hartney said.

The community engagement process will inform a report on future options for the operation of Council’s child care centres beyond 2013. The report is expected to be considered by Council in June and will include an updated analysis of demographic patterns in Bayside and impacts of policy and regulatory change in the child care sector since this work was last undertaken in 2010.

Page last updated: 20 Feb 2013