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Early Childhood Strategy

We know the period from birth to eight years, especially the first three years, sets the foundation for every child's social, physical, emotional and cognitive development. Because of this, we want to make sure every child in the ACT gets the best start to life.

In working towards this goal, the ACT Government is developing an Early Childhood Strategy. The aim of the Strategy is to enable for every child to participate in quality early childhood education and care prior to school.

As identified in the Minister’s discussion paper, the Strategy will focus on four key elements:

We're working on the Strategy in consultation with early childhood education and care sector, through the ACT Early Childhood Advisory Council.

Early Education for Every Three-Year-Old Child

As a key part of the Strategy, the ACT Government has set a goal to introduce the phased implementation of 15 hours per week, 600 hours per year, of free universal quality early childhood education for three-year-old children in the ACT.

The first phase will focus on children who are most in need of quality early childhood education and care. It will also focus on culturally positive early childhood experiences for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children.

Frequently Asked Questions

Key facts

Where will early childhood education be available?

Who is going to provide the service?

When will I be able to access preschool education for my three year old child?

Joining the Conversation

Over the coming months we'll have a conversation with parents, the early childhood education sector, schools and the wider community about the Early Childhood Strategy and how we can give access to quality early childhood education to all three-year-olds in the ACT.

You can also join the conversation at ACT Government’s YourSay website or contact the Early Childhood Policy team via