Carlie Iverach, Steph Cooke MP and Carlie Carr stand in front of children's play equipment surrounded by preschool age children wearing hats.
Carlie Iverach, Steph Cooke MP and Carlie Carr with students at Bland Preschool

More children across the Cootamundra Electorate will have access to a quality early childhood education, with the NSW Government today announcing a $10,000 investment in attendance-encouraging initiatives.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said the funding – part of the NSW Government’s Community Grants program – aims to increase the number of Aboriginal children and children from disadvantaged backgrounds attending a preschool program.

“Services in the Cootamundra Electorate and across NSW were encouraged to apply for grants of up to $100,000 to support transport initiatives like new buses or vehicles to make it easier for children to get to a service,” Ms Cooke said.

“They could also apply for grants of up to $10,000 to invest in a range of activities like breakfast programs and Aboriginal culture classes to further encourage preschool attendance.”

Bland Preschool’s Community Grants application has been successful and the preschool was today awarded $10,000 for staff development and training.

Minister for Education and Early Childhood Learning Sarah Mitchell said it is absolutely crucial for children to experience some kind of early childhood education prior to attending school.

“We know the cognitive, social and emotional benefits a child gains from attending an early childhood education service are incredibly valuable,” Ms Mitchell said.

“As a Government, we are committed to ensuring every child, no matter where they’re from or what their background is, has access to an early childhood service.

“These grants have done a fantastic job of increasing participation in areas of high Aboriginal population or disadvantage, so I am thrilled we can continue to invest in this important initiative.”

For more information, visit the Department of Education website.