Right to a Free Pre-School Education

Our Position on Children's Right to Public Pre-school Education

Our position is that NZ children should have a legal right to a free pre-school education in the same way that children have a right to a free public school education.  The government should ensure that a fully publicly-funded kindergarten or Te Kōhanga Reo place is available for any child to attend morning or afternoon sessions at no cost to families and whanau from age 3 years.  

Note that currently, ECE services can refuse the enrolment of any child and ECE is not free for every child. NZ Free Kindergarten Associations were originally set up to provide free public preschool education for any child from age 3 years. 

"The Government owns the majority of kindergartens and there is certainly a public perception that we are a major partner in the kindergarten sector and therefore have a greater responsibility for encouraging quality." (State Service Minister Trevor Mallard, 13/03/2000 press release).

Today the government needs to step back into its role as duel-partner with Kindergarten Associations and make sure that all kindergartens make available free morning or afternoon preschool education to any child from age 3 years. Additionally as treaty partners with Māori, the Crown must also work in partnership with the Te Kōhanga Reo Trust and support the provision of fully publicly-funded places for children to experience and benefit from learning in a kōhanga reo before starting school/ kura.

Title Created Date
What’s changed for Auckland children, teachers and kindergartens 30 July 2018
Free kindergartens claimed back by the people: Evening vigil outside the AGM of the Auckland Kindergarten Association 30 November 2017
Skeletal staffing plans at kindergartens leads to problems 21 November 2017
Kindy head resignation just the start 13 November 2017
Serious outcomes of kindergarten changes for children 09 November 2017
Digging its own hole deeper - the Auckland Kindergarten Association ongoing story 29 October 2017
Democracy missing – the troubling state of management and relationships at the Auckland Kindergarten Association 04 October 2017
Heroes or Dictators – a Charitable Community Board, its chief executive and standard of consultation on changing a publicly revered early childhood education service 08 August 2017
Open letter on Kindergarten Changes 17 May 2017
Kindergarten under threat 04 May 2017
Where have all the sessional kindergartens and childcare centres gone? 10 November 2014
Childcare and kindergarten employment practices - ERO Report 10 May 2014
High Public Satisfaction with Kindergartens 08 December 2012
Children Attending Two Kindergartens is Okay by Kindergarten Assn Rules 15 August 2012
Kindergartens to get More Funding than other Community-Based Services 20 May 2011
Kindergarten Assn to make Staff Redundant Ahead of Govt Funding Cut 25 October 2010
Kindergartens Change from Sessional Preschool to All-day Licences 30 June 2010
Kindergarten Committees dismissed - Auckland Kindergarten Chief Executive takes power and money from kindergartens 25 August 2007
Auckland Kindergarten Association Should be Treated by Government Differently says AKA Vice President 06 May 1997

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