Three steps to child care

Making the decision to place your child in care hasn’t been easy.

Perhaps you’re returning to work. Recommencing study. Or simply wanting to extend your child’s learning environment outside the home.

Whatever your circumstances are, we understand.

The rollercoaster of emotions that go with making that decision and then choosing the best education and care service to suit your family is tough.

There’s a lot to consider. Quality, cost, practicality. But most importantly, providing a positive experience for your child.

Our goal at St Joseph’s Family Services is helping you find the best solution to suit your needs.

We’ve been established in Port Macquarie as early education innovators for nearly 50 years.

Starting from simple beginnings as a 20-place preschool in 1973, we now offer four nationally accredited service to meet a diverse range of family requirements.

OK, let’s take our first step.

Step 1 – Considering Your Options

One size doesn’t fit all. Your family and care requirements are unique. Take some time to work out which service best suits your family’s needs.

  • St Agnes Early Education Centre – a family focused, long day care service for children aged 6 weeks to 6 years. St Agnes offers 90 places and operates 49 weeks of the year from 7.30am to 6.00pm – Monday to Friday.
  • Joey’s House Early Education Centre – a flexible service that offers half day and full day sessions to suit occasional and long day care for children aged 6 weeks to 6 years. Joey’s House offers 55 places and operates 49 weeks of the year from 7.00am to 6.00pm – Monday to Friday.
  • St Joseph’s Preschool and Long Day Care – a service to cater for children 3 to 6 years old. St Joseph’s Preschool & LDC is a 60-place service that offers preschool programs with the choice of extended hours and long day care options. The centre operates 49 weeks of the year from 8.00am to 6.00pm – Monday to Friday.

Step 2 – Be Assured of Quality

Knowing your child is in a quality focused service provides peace of mind. So here comes all the important regulation stuff.

St Joseph’s Family Services Early Education and Care Centres operate in accordance with the Education and Care Services National Quality Framework (NQF).

The NQF sets a higher national quality standard to encourage services to continue to improve their programs and practices. Services are assessed and rated against seven quality areas of the National Quality Standard.

St Joseph’s Family Services currently rate as Meeting and Exceeding National Quality Standard across all four services.

Quality box ticked!

Starting Blocks is a great site to learn more about quality ratings and early childhood education and care.

Step 3 – Claiming Child Care Subsidy

We recognise the cost of child care will impact on your family budget. Therefore, creating awareness on ways you can reduce financial pressure is important to us.

Families enrolled with St Joseph’s Family Services are encouraged to access fee assistance advice from our Client Services Team at any time. But for now, let’s look at Child Care Subsidy as the most accessible form of fee relief.

Child Care Subsidy is a means tested Australian government rebate. If you earn less than $351,248 in combined family income and are undertaking one or more of the following activities for at least 8 hours a fortnight, the good news is you’re eligible to claim.

  • paid work (includes if you are currently on leave)
  • self-employment
  • unpaid work in a family business
  • looking for work
  • volunteering
  • training
  • Studying
Combined family Income Subsidy received as a percentage of the fee charged
$0 to $66,958 85%
Above $66,958 to below $171,958 Between 85% and 50% (decreasing by 1% for every $3,000 of income)
$171,958 to below $251,248 50%
$251,248 to below $341,248 Between 50% and 20% (decreasing by 1% for every $3,000 of income)
$341,248 to below $351,248 20%
$341,248 or more 0%

For more detailed information on how to apply for Child Care Subsidy, please visit Centrelink.

Now we’ve taken those first three steps, would you like some more information?

Do you have questions on enrolment and fees? If you do, please contact us with your enquiry.

Or call 02 6583 6464 to chat with our friendly Client Services Team. Email us to receive a free Information Booklet we’d love to send out to you jam-packed with everything you need to start your child’s education journey.