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How do kindergarten offers work?

We use state government guidelines and Bayside local criteria to allocate kindergarten offers. These are used when there are more applicants than places available. Once an offer has been made, find out about accepting, declining or if you can defer or repeat a year.

Kindergarten offers are allocated in accordance with state government guidelines which prioritises access for children who are vulnerable, at risk, or have a disability.

For information on priority of access eligibility, visit the Department of Educations website.

All other places are offered in accordance with continuity and proximity criteria which are reviewed on an annual basis taking into account feedback from kindergarten teachers, committees, families and guidance from Department of Education and Training.

What are the continuity and proximity criteria?

Continuity and proximity criterion weighting is only applied where there are more applicants than places available in order to create equitable access. Your child will not be excluded from applying or selection because they do not meet one or all of them.

Continuity criteria and weighting

Your child's circumstance Weighting
The current 3-year-old child applying for a place in a 4-year-old program at the same service 70%
Sibling of a current enrolment applying for a place in a 3 or 4-year-old program at the same service 40%
Child of a former enrolment who attended in the previous 4 years applying for a place in a 3 or 4-year-old program at the same service 20%

Proximity criteria and weighting

Your child's circumstance Weighting
Application for a place in either the 3 or 4-year-old program where the first preference kindergarten is the closest community delivered kindergarten to the child’s primary place of care. Primary place of care includes family home, family day care service or occasional care service. 20%
An application for a place in either the 3 or 4-year-old program which is not at their closest community delivered kindergarten. This includes families moving into Bayside that supply evidence of a future Bayside address. 10%

What if I do not receive a first round offer?

You will receive an email notification advising that you are on the waitlist for subsequent offers.

Multiple births and blended families

Where possible, multiple births and siblings from blended families who will attend kindergarten during the same period will be kept together.

Can an offer be deferred?

You cannot elect to defer an offer during the rounds of offer. An offer can either be accepted or declined at the time it is offered.

Three-year-old enrolments cannot be deferred once the offer has been accepted. If a family decides not to commence the year, or withdraw once the child has commenced, a new application will need to be submitted for the following year. The child will not be eligible for additional weighting related to a year of attendance.

Deferrals are only available for offers that have been accepted for a 4-year-old enrolment. However, once a child has commenced in the 4-year-old kindergarten program, deferrals are not available if the kindergarten has provided their yearly enrolment data to the Department of Education and Training (which is any time during the first term). If you have concerns about your child’s readiness, you will need to discuss this with your child’s teacher at your earliest opportunity.

Can my child repeat a year?

Requests to repeat 3-year-old kindergarten are only considered for children with additional needs or disadvantage. These repeats will require documentary support from the kindergarten teacher and will be approved on a case by case basis.

A repeat 4-year-old year occurs where a child is assessed by the teacher or another early childhood professional as having delayed development identified in 2 or more areas and has been approved as eligible for a second year of funded kindergarten by the Department of Education and Training.

Where a child is not approved as eligible for a second year of funded kindergarten they will not be offered a kindergarten place until all eligible applicants have been offered places. The child will need to be self-funded during the repeat year.

For information regarding repeating 4-year-old kindergarten, please visit www.education.vic.gov.au