Starting preschool

Find handy hints from early childhood teachers and parents to make it easier for you and your family to get your child ready for preschool.

Going to preschool

The idea of preschool can be a bit daunting for many parents. You may feel like your little one is growing up too fast. Don’t worry! Preschool is a time when your child will have lots of fun with children their own age.

Preschool helps to develop and broaden the way children experience education, encouraging them to become confident, eager and enthusiastic learners who are looking forward to starting big school.

Getting prepared

Have you met the preschool teacher?

The preschool teacher is an important person to get to know. The teacher will be able to tell you about what happens at preschool and help answer any questions that will help your child settle in.

The preschool has a range of policies and procedures to promote the health, safety and wellbeing of all children. These include arrival and departure, food and nutrition, education and sun protection.

If you would like more information on our preschool policies, talk to the preschool teacher. For more tips on going to preschool, visit the department's Preschools page.

Allergies, health conditions and additional needs

Before your child starts preschool, it’s important to let the preschool know if your child has any allergies, health conditions or any additional needs. This will give the preschool time to make any necessary arrangements for your child.

Make sure your child’s immunisation schedule is up to date. Preschools cannot enrol a child unless they either:

  • are fully vaccinated for their age
  • have a medical reason not to be vaccinated
  • are on a recognised vaccination catch-up schedule.

Label everything

Clearly label all of your child’s items such as their clothes, bag and lunch box. There will be a lost property box at the preschool.

Make sure your child’s name is not visible on the outside of anything they’ll be wearing to and from preschool.

Checklist

Here’s a list of things your child will need:

  • a bag
  • a lunch box
  • lunch
  • snacks for morning or afternoon tea and a drink
  • a change of clothes, including socks and underwear
  • a hat
  • a sheet and/or blanket for rest time.

Sign the register

The preschool will ask you to sign a register at the beginning and end of each day or session. Make sure you sign this register, which you can usually find at the preschool entrance.

Resources

Below you will find some handy resources from our site and other great websites.

Department resources

  • Preschool enrolment - A guide to enrolling in a NSW Department of Education preschool, including the application process and enrolment interviews.
  • Translated school information – Department of Education information is available in many languages.
  • Disability, learning and support – NSW public schools support all children with disabilities or learning difficulties, no matter what stage of schooling.

Other useful websites

Return to top of page