Erica PreSchool to Remain in 2025 following Community Campaign

A decision by Y Kinders and the Department to keep Erica Preschool open in 2025 has been welcomed by Member for Narracan, Mr Wayne Farnham and Member for Eastern Victoria Region, and Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Education, Ms Melina Bath.

The decision came after a strong community led campaign, supported by Mr Farnham and Ms Bath, which saw Y Kinders reverse its decision to close the service.

Mr Farnham said it had been a whole of community campaign which had delivered the outcome.

“I am very pleased to see common sense prevail here.

“Regional and rural families already face challenges in accessing education services and if this preschool had been allowed to close it would have been disastrous for the community and for students.

“With Councils outsourcing these services, more needs to be done to ensure small rural and regional kinders are protected. One solution could be packaging kinders together, so providers are unable  to cherry pick the more profitable services leaving smaller services and families high and dry.

“Our regional communities deserve to have the same access to early education services as our major towns.

“I am glad that following our advocacy in Parliament and in direct meetings with the Minister, we have been able to help secure the right outcome here for this community.

“The Liberals and Nationals will always stand up for regional communities and fight to keep services like this open to support families,” said Mr Farnham.

Ms Bath said while this was a great achievement, it was now up to Y Kinders and the Department to work on a long-term solution to ensure the service remained beyond 2025.

“We know early years education is vital to a young Victorians education journey and while today is a win for this community, we need to make sure it remains long-term beyond 2025.

“Mr Farnham and I will be continuing to advocate for our rural and regional preschools and kinders to ensure families have access to early years education as close to home as possible. “This result has come off the back of a strong community led campaign and I am pleased we have been able to support families and achieve the outcome they deserve,” said Ms Bath.