frequently asked questions


At Imagine Early Learning & Childcare, we understand that you may have a lot of questions when considering enrolling your child at our centre. Here is a list of some of the questions that parents frequently ask. Please feel free to contact us if you have any further questions.

 

What is early learning and why is it important?

There’s a huge amount of compelling recent research on the first five years of a child’s development and how it affects the rest of their lives. We know that 80 per cent of a child’s brain is developed within the first five years. We also know that children who start ahead stay ahead and keep accelerating beyond their peers.

Over time, it becomes harder to close gaps between children who are excelling, and those falling behind. That’s why it’s so important to get it right from the start. To give our children the best possible opportunities for their future, we need to lay the foundations early.

Children start learning from the day they are born. They need a rich range of hands-on play-based experiences and intentional teaching to develop the skills for future success. Therefore, it is paramount for young children to be engaged in high-quality early childhood education programs to lay strong foundations for their future success.  A significant amount of research demonstrates that children who start ahead tending to stay ahead.

At Imagine Early Learning and Childcare, we take in pride in providing environments that support each child to reach their potential.

What is the difference between ‘Child Care Centre’ and ‘Preschool’?

There is a misconception that ‘Childcare’ is simply providing care for children and ‘Preschools’ provide an education.  The truth is that all Early Childhood Services are assessed against the National Quality Standard (NQS), which has a strong focus on both ‘caring and nurturing’ as well as the learning and educational aspects of the program.

All Imagine Early Learning & Childcare Centres have separate preschool rooms for children aged 3-4yrs and 4-5 yrs. The preschool programs in these rooms are developed and implemented by Early Childhood Trained Teachers.   The advantage to families of having a preschool program run within a ‘Child Care Centre’ or ‘Daycare Centre’ is that it offers families the flexibility of the longer operating hours and choice of days.

What qualifications do your staff hold?

Our staff hold various qualifications in Early Childhood – ranging from the minimum qualification of Certificate III in Children’s Services to Bachelor of Education in Early Childhood. But the most important qualification that our staff hold is not written on any certificate but clearly visible to a trained eye – and that is a true passion and commitment to provide the very best care and education for young children.

What ages do Imagine Early Learning & Childcare Centres cater for?

Most of our centres cater for children aged from six weeks to school age. Imagine Early Learning Shortland caters for children aged 18 months to school age. 

What are the operating hours?

Operating hours vary between centres; however, they are generally open from 6.30am to 6.30pm, Monday to Friday, 52 weeks a year. We are not open on weekends or public holidays. Please check with the individual centres for more information.

Do you provide meals?

Majority of our centre have an on-site cook who prepares healthy nutritious meals, which include morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea.  Mealtimes at Imagine Early Learning & Childcare are not only to fill hungry tummies but also an opportunity to practice self-help, language and social skills. In other words, a lot of fun!

How do I find out more about my local centre?

You can submit an online enquiry via ‘Contact us’ or check further details on the selected centre’s website by clicking on ‘Our Centres’. 

How do I enrol at a Imagine Early Learning centre?

In the first instance, you need to submit an online application form via our website. The Centre Director will contact you once a suitable position becomes available.  They will invite you to visit the centre so that you can meet the educators, view the environment and ask any questions you may have. We want to ensure you are comfortable with your decision. They will then provide you with an enrolment pack that contains everything you need to know about the centre, and enrolment forms. Once you return the completed forms, further visits can be arranged before your child’s start date.  We want to ensure a smooth transition as possible, so feel free to visit as many times as necessary.  Even after your child starts, we will support you every step of the way.

How much does it cost to send my child to an Imagine Early Learning & Childcare centre?

Fees vary from centre to centre and are also dependent on things such as the number of days in care, the age of your child as well as your eligibility for any government subsidies. We recommend that contact the Centre Director of your nominated centre who will be able to provide an estimated quote. Please click ‘Our Centres’ for contact details of your nominated centre.

What happens if my booked day falls on a public holiday?

Imagine, along with many other providers in the sector, closes for public holidays. If your scheduled booked day falls on public holidays, fees will still apply as staff and operating costs still need to be covered. The Australian Government’s Child Care Subsidy (CCS) covers up to 42 absence days a year, which includes public holidays. This means that, unless you exceed this quota, you will be eligible for the CCS discount on public holidays.

Do I still need to pay for a booked day if my child is sick?

Yes, fee’s still apply for sick days. The Child Care Subsidy will cover up to 42 absence days a year with no documentation and unlimited sick days if you’re able to provide a medical certificate.

What government rebates and benefits are available to families?

The Child Care Subsidy (CCS) is a payment offered by the Australian Government for which you may be eligible. To find out if you are eligible for CSS visit the Department of Human Services website:  

https://www.humanservices.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/child-care-subsidy

Depending on your personal circumstances, there may also be other government funding available.