Education fund pledge
The Liberal Nationals have pledged to target early language and literacy programs in communities, such as Benalla, where young children are at risk of falling behind their peers.
If elected they have pledged to fund a $16 million grants program for community-driven early learning programs designed to prepare kids for school.
State Member for Euroa Steph Ryan said the Liberal Nationals want to give young children a great start in their early years, so they do not spend their primary and secondary school years trying to catch up.
‘‘A good education can change the life of a child, which is why improving education outcomes in the early years is so important,’’ Ms Ryan said.
‘‘A child’s future shouldn’t be determined by where they live.
‘‘These grants will make sure extra education support is focussed where our kids need it most.’’
Research shows young children who are given opportunities and support to explore, play, problem solve, read and socialise in a group environment are better prepared for life and learning.
Community-based programs in the areas where children are considered most developmentally vulnerable, as identified in the most recent Australian Early Development Census, will be eligible for funding.
Successful programs must show an increase in positive literacy outcomes, improvements in school engagement and greater resilience in children.
By improving early learning, as a community we can set our kids up for life and make them ready for school.
The $16 million grants program complements the Liberal Nationals’ $80 million Brighter Futures Fund, which is aimed at lifting education opportunities through better support for parents and children in the early years of schooling.
The Brighter Futures Fund will be invested in integrated education hubs — a one-stop-shop for allied health, early childhood, maternal and child health services, and tertiary education.