Before and After School Care (BASC)

Work is progressing on the $120 million commitment to expand access to before and after school care (BASC) for all parents with children at NSW public primary schools.

Overview

BASC services operate in more than 750 public schools in NSW as well as many more operating on other sites. They provide a mix of before and after school hours care as well as on site holiday care for students.

The BASC commitment aims to fill gaps in access to services across the State, encouraging innovative solutions and clearing waiting lists in areas of high demand and greatest need.

Creating certainty in challenging times

The impact of COVID-19 has confirmed the importance of before and after school care as an essential service for NSW families. Supporting the BASC sector will be a key factor in the recovery of the NSW economy.

We are working with school communities and the sector to ensure continuity of care for families and ongoing sector support during the recovery process.

To better understand the changing requirements of care in light of COVID-19 we are currently contacting school principals, running the OSHC Census once per term and we conducted a parent survey in Term 3.

For providers

Our goal can only be achieved with the support of the hundreds of care providers who deliver quality and affordable care for families and communities.

Throughout 2019, the Department engaged in statewide consultations with the before and after school care service sector that enabled them to provide insights on BASC-specific issues and opportunities, and provided the forum for cross sector learning and ongoing engagement.

The Ministers Roundtable in 2019 gave us an opportunity to hear from a number of providers on the issues faced by the sector and to get Ministerial input on how to respond. This helped guide our interactions with the broader sector throughout 2019, including through a series of roadshows across NSW. The views of the sector has directly informed our collaboration with key partners to develop solutions that can meet sector, school and community needs.

In 2020 we are continuing to work with schools and the sector to find solutions, especially in light of COVID-19. We will work with schools, communities and providers to pilot new approaches and to better understand the needs of families. Some innovative solutions to be explored include transport options, services working across communities of schools and other types of service alternatives where a standalone BASC is not viable.

An information pack is available for providers (PDF 765.95KB).

For schools

The BASC commitment will improve access and affordability for parents and through our consultations with schools, we have identified targeted improvements for access including:

  • Ensuring available spaces in all public primary schools in Sydney, Newcastle, Illawarra and the Central Coast, as well as major regional centres are made available for before and after school care and school holiday care programs from 7am to 6pm
  • Making it easier for schools to host BASC services with $8.5 million over four years for a team of specialists to help coordinate services and resources, and reducing the administrative burden on principals
  • The new specialist team will provide assistance for principals to help with setting up services and contract management
  • Focusing on accessibility for students who face additional barriers to access due to disadvantage, special needs, disability and children who may be at risk of significant harm.

Throughout 2019, the Department worked together with schools to help drive understanding of the commitment and the roles and responsibilities of key department stakeholders to achieve the commitment objectives.

In 2020 we are continuing to work with schools and the sector to find solutions, especially in light of COVID-19. We will work with schools, communities and providers to pilot new approaches and to better understand the needs of families. Some innovative solutions to be explored include transport options, services working across communities of schools and other types of service alternatives where a standalone BASC is not viable.

An Information pack is available for schools (PDF 765.95KB).

For parents

Our objective is to provide access to quality and affordable out of school care for the families of all children attending NSW public primary schools who need care.

We are continuing to consult with schools, parents, communities and providers to find innovative solutions for creating more places in more schools.

Parents can find a before and after school care or vacation care at Service NSW.

Resources and more information

Grants and funding

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