Preschool enrolment

Department of Education preschools enrol children for one year only – the year before they start kindergarten.

  • Children can enrol from the beginning of the school year if they turn 4 on or before 31 July that year. Enrolment is offered in the following order:
    1. children living within the school's enrolment area
    2. children living outside the school's enrolment area who have siblings already attending the school
    3. other children from outside the school's enrolment area.
  • Priority is given to children from disadvantaged backgrounds who are unable to access other children's services, in particular, families experiencing financial hardship and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children.
  • Documentation regarding immunisation must be supplied.
  • Schools accept enrolment applications from the beginning of Term 2 the year before the child starts preschool.
  • When the number of applications exceeds availability, parents can apply for waiting list placement. The school's placement panel will consider and prioritise these applications.

Enrolment interviews

Contact your chosen public preschool to discuss your child's potential enrolment. You will be asked for the following documents:

  • your child's birth certificate or identity documents
  • proof of your child's address - originals of different documents such as your council rates notice or residential lease and electricity bill
  • low income health care card (if applicable)
  • family law or relevant court orders (if applicable).

If your child has special circumstances, allergies, health or medical conditions, it's important you tell the principal about these before your child starts preschool. The school may also complete a risk assessment.

Application to enrol

Complete the application to enrol in NSW government preschool (PDF 555KB).

Visit translated documents for translated versions of the preschool enrolment application.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children

  • We have 11 preschools catering specifically for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children.
  • Every effort is made to ensure places are filled by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. If there are insufficient Aboriginal enrolments, places may be offered to non-Aboriginal children.
  • When prioritising applications, preschools in communities with significant numbers of Aboriginal children should liaise with the local Aboriginal Education Consultative Group (AECG).

Distance education programs

  • A limited number of schools offer distance education preschool programs for geographically isolated children.
  • Designation of sites that provide preschool programs via distance education is determined on a needs basis every three years.

For more information, visit Rural and distance education.

Children with disability

The department's Every Student, Every School initiative provides support for students with disability, learning difficulties or behavioural support needs. Some resources to assist include:

  • learning and engagement officers (LEOs)
  • the school's learning and support program
  • Transition to school - a resource for children with disabilities
  • early intervention classes - accessed through an application process.

Temporary visa holders

  • Preschool aged children who are temporary visa holders may enrol in departmental preschools under the same conditions as Australian citizens. However, some short-term visa holders are ineligible.
  • Temporary residents who hold visitor/tourist visas are not eligible for enrolment.
  • Temporary visa holders are required to pay preschool class fees although they do not have to pay the temporary resident's fee.

Visit Schedule of visa subclasses and enrolment conditions for information on temporary visa subclasses.

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