Transport boost helps get bush kids to preschool

Media release by the Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Paul Toole, and the Hon. Sarah Mitchell, Minister for Education and Early Childhood

Natasha and Clancy Young from Nyngan Preschool who will be accessing the Preschool Drive Subsidy in 2022 Natasha and Clancy Young from Nyngan Preschool who will be accessing the Preschool Drive Subsidy in 2022
Image: Natasha and Clancy Young from Nyngan Preschool who will be accessing the Preschool Drive Subsidy in 2022

Families living in the most remote parts of the State will find it easier to send their children to preschool with the trial of a new transport subsidy rolling out next year to 90 participating preschools.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Paul Toole said the Preschool Drive Subsidy pilot will offset part of the transport costs of driving children to preschool, saving remote families thousands of dollars per year.

"We want every child in NSW to have access to a quality preschool education no matter their location," Mr Toole said.

"That's why we're trialling this subsidy which will allow eligible families to claim up to 70 cents per kilometre via car and 35 cents per kilometre via boat or motorbike at 90 participating preschools, where there is limited or no public transport."

"From Boggabilla to Balranald, this will make it easier for children living in remote NSW to attend preschool, allowing them the best possible start on their learning journey."

Minister for Education and Early Childhood Learning Sarah Mitchell said the Preschool Drive Subsidy pilot is based on the existing and successful School Drive Subsidy.

"Funding of up to $2 million has been allocated to the Preschool Drive Subsidy pilot as part of the larger School Drive Subsidy program," Ms Mitchell said.

"The School Drive Subsidy has proven to be effective in easing the financial burden of transport for families across regional NSW who have little or no access to public transport. Applying this formula to preschool children will offer the same benefits."

The Preschool Drive Subsidy pilot will be delivered through a partnership between Department of Education and Transport for NSW.

The targeted per kilometre subsidy will be available for eligible families in remote NSW from Term 1, 2022, to offset part of the transport costs of driving children to participating preschools.

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