FAQ’S

3.5 year old Health Assessment

What is the 3.5 year old Health Assessment?

The 3.5 year old health assessment is your last scheduled appointment with your Maternal and Child Health Nurse (MCH). This check is free and is funded by the state government.

If the MCH nurse does not book in a time for you please ensure that you book this in as this check is an important one.

During this time, your child’s growth, health and development will be reviewed. This time is an important point in your child’s development as most general health issues will be able to be reviewed and if present, can be adequately resourced to allow your child not to fall behind in learning and development. For example, poor vision or hearing can significantly impact your child’s cognitive and physical development.

What happens during the 3.5 year old Health Assessment?

The checks that the MCH covers are covered in your child’s Green book. These areas include:

  • helping your child to eat healthy food
  • taking care of your child’s teeth
  • your child’s vision
  • sun protection
  • how play helps learning and development
  • family relationships and wellbeing
  • immunisations (noting that the ‘no job no play’ policy requires this for your CCS entitlements)
  • kindergarten enrolment (noting that we offer a 3 year old and a 4 year old accredited kindergarten programme).

Please ensure that if you have any questions or concerns about you that you list them in the Parents’ Evaluation of Development Status (PEDS).

Your MCH nurse will also give you general advice about any questions regarding your child’s development.

Why do we ask for your child's 3.5 year old Health Assessment?

The aim of the health assessment is to promote healthy outcomes for children and their families. The assessment will allow educators and families to identify and focus on developmental areas that your child may find challenging or identify that your child is exceeding their developmental norms. We may be able to use this to reach out to specialists or early intervention programs if needed. Furthermore, this helps educators develop an individual program, combined with your input and your child’s feedback, based on the needs of your child.

What better way to learn how your child is developing!

What happens if I miss my child's 3.5 year old Health Assessment?

The 3.5 year old health assessment appointment can be easily missed as it is not something that the MCH will book in for you. If you miss your child’s health check it is recommended that you book in an appointment with your family GP or paediatrician. Family GP appointments are usually free and your family GP might already have an extensive knowledge of your child. On the other hand, Paediatricians are doctors who specialise in the health of children, including their physical, behaviour and mental health issues.

Centrelink & CRN

What is a Child Care Subsidy (CCS)?

Child Care Subsidy (CCS) is an income-tested payment and recognised activities that you do which reduces the cost of your total child care fees. It is available to you if you are a parent, foster parent or grandparent with a child in your care who is attending child care approved for the purposes of CCS by, or registered with, the Government. There are certain eligibility requirements you must meet to get CCS.

What is a CRN number?

A CRN is your Centrelink provided Customer Reference Number (CRN). Both you and your child(ren) will need to have CRNs.

CRN is used to access all Centrelink support – most importantly your Child’s CRN is used for CCS. Without your child’s CRN you will have to pay full fees (100%) – only when the Centrelink online system is updated with your child’s CRN is your CCS able to be automatically taken out of your childcare fees.

The system is automated and we cannot override or alter Centrelink’s procedures. This means that the quicker that you get your child’s CRN the better.

How to get a CRN – Parent CRN first

If you are already a Centrelink customer then you will have a CRN – this will be found on your correspondence from Centrelink.

If unsure, we recommend you call Centrelink and check if you have a CRN. Most people will have one even if they have not been involved with Centrelink for many years.

Not yet issued with your (parent) CRN
If you are not a customer, then you must first get your CRN before applying for your child’s CRN.

Go to your nearest Centrelink service centre:

  • Take your proof of identity documents – check online (findus.humanservices.gov.au/) or ring them (136 150) for what you need
  • They will assist with any further documentation and may be able to issue a CRN immediately.

Please note that ringing Centrelink can have delays of 1 to 2 hours and may be a very frustrating experience.

Your child's CRN number is next

You need to contact Centrelink to request your Child’s CRN. Either:

  • Go to your nearest Centrelink service centre with your child’s Birth Certificate to lodge the document and request a CRN for your child, or
  • Upload your child’s Proof of Birth or Birth Certificate to Centrelink (through either Centrelink online account or myGov online account1). If you have not received your child’s CRN within a few weeks it is worth calling Centrelink to check if there are any issues.

Most delays in providing a CRN is because Centrelink are awaiting information from you. Once Centrelink have all the required information a CRN can be generated immediately.

Even though you believe you have submitted all the correct documents, they will not inform you if you are missing anything. You need to be proactive and ring them to find out why.

We cannot call Centrelink on your behalf. Due to Privacy legislation Centrelink will not allow us to ask about your account or details.

Centrelink online account

Once you have a CRN you can register today for a Centrelink online account. You should allow between 5 to 15 minutes to complete the registration process for a Centrelink online account. Once you have registered you can also use the Express Plus Centrelink mobile app.

myGov online account

A myGov account is required for Child Care Subsidy (CCS).

It is also very handy as it can link Centrelink, Medicare, and Child Support with one username and password. You can then just use this portal to upload documents to Centrelink. The other great benefit is that all your letters are available online. This is very handy as you now have fast easy access to your important documents and they will be retained for future reference. To create a myGov account just use this link and follow the prompts – humanservices.gov.au/individuals/online-help/create-mygov-account

What do I have to do upon enrolment?

You can check your child’s CRN by accessing your Centrelink online account through myGov or using the Express Plus Centrelink mobile app.

To be entitled to your CCS you will need to log back into your Centrelink account and complete the Confirm Enrolment task. You can do this by logging into your myGov account.

Absences and CCS

CCS is paid for up to 42 absences per child per financial year. Additional absences beyond 42 days for specified reasons may be approved. Please discuss your circumstances with the Director regarding possible additional absences, otherwise you won’t be eligible for any CCS payments for those days.

In addition, attendance during your last two weeks is required, otherwise Centrelink is likely to not approve your CCS.

A public holiday is counted as an absence at our centre.

You can access your child’s absence record using your Centrelink online account through myGov by selecting View Child Care Details and Payments. You can also do this using the Express Plus Centrelink mobile app.

You can read more about absences from child care on the Department of Education and Training website.

Additional Child Care Subsidy (ACCS) – what other assistance is available

Additional Child Care Subsidy (ACCS) is a payment from the Australian Government for families who need practical help with the cost of child care to support their child’s wellbeing.
https://docs.education.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/10._what_is_the_accs_child_wellbeing.pdf
https://docs.education.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/10._what_is_the_accs_child_wellbeing.pdf

Additional Child Care Subsidy (transition to work) – transitioning to work from income support payment by engaging in work, study or training activities.
https://docs.education.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/11_what_is_the_accs_transition_to_work.pdf

Additional Child Care Subsidy (temporary financial hardship) – to help families experiencing significant financial stress with the cost of child care.
https://docs.education.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/12._what_is_the_accs_temporary_financial_hardship.pdf

Additional Child Care Subsidy (grandparent) – grandparents on income support who are the principal carers of their grandchild(ren) with the cost of child care.
https://docs.education.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/13._what_is_the_accs_grandparent.pdf

Kindy or Sessional?(long day care kindergarten or sessional kindergarten)

Kindergarten program importance

The Kindergarten programme is designed to equip your child with the necessary skills needed not only to transition smoothly to school, but also the skills that they will carry with them throughout life.

Little Learners Early Education is a recognised Government funded approved kindergarten program, which are run by bachelor trained early childhood teachers in the two years before school.

These programs are integrated into the long day care hours and provides families the flexibility to work.

Sessional (15 hours a week)Our Kindy (every day – 12 hours)
Won't meet all your child's needs

  • Sessional will only focus upon a few strengths of your child and do not have the resources or the time with your child to help with any of your child’s challenges/needs.

  • Limited contact hours means limited opportunities.

  • Focus upon socialisation, not education.

We will meet all your child's needs

  • We actively seek to help your child develop emotional resilience, sense of agency, and other fundamental building blocks for much needed home, family and life skills.

We provide extensive learning opportunities

Will not meet your needs


  • Sessional are for very limited and fixed times only. Without any flexibility to your needs.

  • Essentially a sessional Kindergarten will only 15 hours per week, usually over two or three days, with set session times per day.

  • Can close without any notice (if their teachers are sick, sessions will not run).

  • Closed for School Holidays.

  • No absences. No refunds.

Fully flexible – drop-off and pick-up any time

  • Our integrated Kindergarten program runs for the whole day (12 hours). You can drop-off and pick-up at any time.

All inclusive

  • No hassle. Nutritional food, bedding, stationery, toys etc included.

All year round

  • Except for public holidays. We are open all school holidays.
Guaranteed entry to School position!


  • Sessional Kindy associated with a school often say or hint that your child will be able to continue into their Prep allocation in the school year.
  • This is untrue. It is written in their fine print You are not automatically reserved a school position. You will still undergo the school's normal enrolment process.
We will get your child School Ready


  • Your child will be educated to a higher level and will have higher emotional and social development with us.

  • Your child is far better prepared for any school interview, then if they attended any Sessional care.

  • We also focus heavily on exceeding all school requirements and achieve this each and every year. Please see our testimonials.

Sessional Kindy may appear cheap…


  • Sessional advertise a daily or term rate, which is the rate that you pay after all government funding and rebates are taken into account.

  • Its only for 15 hours a week!

Come and get an accurate quote


  • Our published fees do not include CCS (government subsidies) or our Centre rebates. The daily and hourly cost may actually be much lower.

  • We can easily give you an actual cost of what you will pay. No commitment, we just need a few details and our experienced Director can help you work out exactly what your out of pocket costs will be.

As a long day care centre, our Kindergarten operates from as early as 6:30 am until 6:30 pm.

We provide healthy meals, nappies, educational programs and sleep/rest times throughout the day open all year round except for public holidays. We are open 52 weeks a year, only closing on public holidays. If your booked day falls on a public holiday you will receive a 50% fee reduction.

If you are also going away for a family holiday, you still pay for your child’s position but at the holiday rate which is 40% fee reduction.

Peanuts

Nut allergies are NOT Peanut allergies

Peanuts are legumes (grow underground on roots) and not classified as nuts (tree nuts which grow on a tree). Peanut allergies and tree nut allergies are different. Children allergic to peanuts are often not allergic to other legumes.

Allergy

An immune system response to something that the body has identified as an allergen.

Symptoms can include any swelling of the lips, eyes or face, hives or welts, vomiting, or any change in your baby’s well-being (becoming very unsettled) soon after giving food.

Anaphylaxis

Anaphylaxis is a severe, rapid and life threatening allergic reaction and is always treated as a medical emergency.

Symptoms can include difficult/noisy breathing, swelling of the tongue, swelling/tightness in throat, wheeze/persistent cough, difficulty talking and/or hoarse voice, persistent dizziness or collapse, pale and floppy.

Shouldn’t peanuts be banned from the centre?

Severe allergies to foods and insects are two of the most common causes of anaphylaxis. As it is possible to be allergic to any food, it is not possible, nor practical, to remove all possible food allergens from childcare services. Obviously, it is also not possible to remove all insects or ticks that children are allergic to. Minimising exposure to known allergens is therefore a more appropriate way to reduce the risk of anaphylaxis.

Good communication between you as parents, our educators and your child is vital.

Food bans are not recommended by regional guidelines or position statements, by Government bodies or by patient/consumer organisations or ASCIA. Banning specific foods from an environment will not eliminate the risk of accidental exposure. It is unreasonable to expect that a childcare service will be ‘nut free’ or remove other allergens and such claims cannot be made.

Food restrictions

Unlike food bans, food restrictions may have a partial role to play in very young children (under 12 months old) who might share common toys where cross contamination with food may result in allergic reactions from oral exposure or greater person-to-person contact. This situation is not applicable to older children.

This will only apply to a single room and not the centre.

Food from Home form

It is vital that you fill in a Food from Home form accurately so that we can monitor the food entering the service.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to discuss them with your Lead Educator / Teacher, Chef, or Centre Director.

Where to find further information – www.allergy.org.au

Statements

How will I receive my statement?

All families are required to provide a current email address which will be used to send your statements and any other correspondence (newsletters and the like). The administration officer will normally email statements every Tuesday regardless of your payment cycle. You will receive your statement each Tuesday prior to payment being processed on Thursday via direct debit.

Why are my fees direct debited in advance when I have already paid a 2-week bond?

Your fees are direct debited for the care you are about to use (think of it as paying rent in advance). The bond is there to cover any discrepancies with your account upon your cancellation of care. Upon cancellation of care, and if all fees remain paid, then we will transfer any remaining Bond or advanced payments back into your designated account. A final statement will be always be provided.

Please note if you pay weekly you are required to be a week ahead in fees, if you pay fortnightly you are required to be a fortnight ahead, principally you are paying for the care that you are about to receive in advance.

Why does my statement show estimations?

On your statement you will see that some CCS amounts are BOLD and underlined. This indicates that the amount is an estimate from Centrelink and has yet to be authorised by them. The amount may change once your information is processed through Centrelink each week, and then the actual amount approved will show as normal.

Centrelink cycles are beyond our control and can often take several days to weeks. We have found that most of these clear prior to the next weeks billing cycle.

If I have any questions regarding my statement who do I speak to?

The administration officer will be able to help you with all questions regarding your fees, Centrelink or your statement. Please call us on 03 9436 9111 within business hours with any questions that you may have. Alternatively, please email the administration officer directly enquiries@littlelearners.net.au

What if I’m having difficulty in paying my fees?

Please discuss this with the Director as soon as you think it might become an issue and a payment plan can be entered into. Please be very proactive regarding this as we have access to a number of resources that may be of assistance to you.

Who controls my CCS percentage?

This is a percentage given to you once you have submitted your Child Care Subsidy claim. It is based upon your income. The centre does not have control over your CCS percentage. The centre cannot alter, remove or add CCS percentage if it has been removed from your statement. You will need to contact Centrelink for these matters.

Who controls my CCS hours?

This is the hours per fortnight allocated to you (up to a maximum of 100), after you have submitted your Child Care Subsidy claim. It is based upon the number of hours that you work, are seeking work, study, volunteer, and travel to and from these activities. The centre does not have control over your CCS hours. You will need to contact Centrelink for these matters. If you wish to volunteer at the service then these hours can be used by Centrelink to increase your allocation. Please discuss your options directly with the centre Director.

What happens when I run out of CCS?

If your CCS percentage is 50% or less there is a financial year cap of $10,373 applied to your CCS. This means Centrelink will subsidise your fees up to this amount only. Parents on greater than 50% allowance do not have this cap. If you are on 50% or less allowance, your CCS will reduce to zero at that point and you will need to pay full fees until the new financial year rolls over. Please discuss with the Administration Officer if you are unsure if your CCS will run out before the end of the financial year.