ELIGIBILITY

THREE & FOUR YEAR OLD

NO JAB, NO PLAY

VICTORIAN LAW

Victoria's No Jab, No Play legislation requires all children to be fully vaccinated to be enrolled in kindergarten in Victoria.

Under the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008, in order to finalise an enrolment for a child in a kindergarten, the service must receive a current up-to-date Immunisation History Statement from the Australian Immunisation Register.

'Conscientious objection' to vaccination is not an exemption. 

You can access your Immunisation History Statement via your Medicare online account through myGov or the Express Plus Medicare mobile app.

 
GRACE PERIOD
Some families experiencing vulnerability and disadvantage may face difficulties accessing immunisation services and documentation.  The law recognises that these families need additional time and help. It provides a grace period that allows the child to enrol and attend the service.
 
The 16-week grace period starts on the first day of the child’s attendance at the service.
 
Children who fall within any of the following categories are eligible for the grace period.
 
Children experiencing vulnerability or disadvantage
► Children who hold, or whose parents hold, a health care card, or whose parents hold a pension concession card, Veterans Affairs Gold or White card
► Children from a multiple birth of triplets or more
► Children who are refugees or asylum seekers
► Children displaced by family violence or homelessness
 
Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Children
► Children identified by their parents as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander
 
Children known to child protection
► Children who are on or have been on a protection order
► Children in or who have been in foster care or out-of-home care
► Children or families that have received support from child protection
► Children who have had a report made about them under the Children Youth and Families Act 2005
► Families that have received support through Family Services including Child FIRST; services connect; a community-based child and family service; or an integrated family service.
 
Children in the care of an adult who is not their parent
► Children in the care of an adult who is not the child’s parent due to exceptional circumstances such as illness or incapacity
 
Children in emergency care
► Children in emergency care (for example, emergency foster care) under the Children, Youth and Families Act 2005
 
Evacuated children
► Children evacuated following an emergency (such as flood or fire)
 

THREE YEAR OLD - AGE ELIGIBILITY

BORN BETWEEN THESE DATES

YEAR TO ATTEND 3 YEAR OLD

1 May 2017 and 30 April 2018*

2021

1 May 2018 and 30 April 2019*

2022

1 May 2019 and 30 April 2020*

2023

1 May 2020 and 30 April 2021*

2024

* Children are eligible to apply for three year old provided they turn three years old by 30 April the year they attend.  However, no child can commence sessions until they have turned three. If you wish to accept a place and hold it until your child turns three, a holding fee may apply. 

* Even if your child is eligible to attend three year old in accordance with the table above, that does not mean they must attend that year. You can delay your child's attendance until the following year depending on your child's requirements. Three year old groups will have children between the ages of three and four in them so they will still be attending with their peers.

FOUR YEAR OLD - AGE ELIGIBILITY

BORN BETWEEN THESE DATES

YEAR TO ATTEND 4 YEAR OLD

1 May 2016 and 30 April 2017*

2021

1 May 2017 and 30 April 2018*

2022

1 May 2018 and 30 April 2019*

2023

1 May 2019 and 30 April 2020*

2024

“Families of children with birth dates between 1 January and 30 April have a choice about whether their child will commence school in the year they turn five or the following year, and therefore whether they commence kindergarten in the year they turn four or the year they turn five. Families with children born between 1 January and 30 April need to make an informed choice about which year they would like their child to commence school and therefore which year their child will attend a funded kindergarten program. Families who have questions about the best time for their child to commence school, and hence kindergarten, should discuss this decision with an early childhood teacher, Maternal and Child Health Nurse, Prep teacher or other professions involved in supporting the development of their child.”

Source - DEECD Kindergarten Guide 2014

* Children are eligible to apply for four year old kindergarten provided they turn four years old by 30 April the year they attend. Even though you can enrol your child when they are of eligible age, you do not have to. You can delay your child's kindergarten attendance until the following year if you believe that it is best for your child. Four year old kindergarten programs will have children who are four, five and sometimes even turning six in them. It is important for you to consider if your child is ready for four year old kindergarten. Advice may be sought from the Kindergarten teachers, Maternal and Child Health Nurses or Paediatricians. There is very useful literature on the subject of school readiness that may assist you in making your decision (click here for more information).

Government policy allows a funding subsidy for one year of four year old kindergarten per child in the year prior to school entry. A second year of funded kindergarten may be granted by the government in limited circumstances.  Please consult your child's teacher further regarding this issue.