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Budget 2024 ECE spending and cuts

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NZ Government Budget Announcements for Early Childhood Education

Most of us are unlikely to remember what was announced as part of the 2023 Budget. To jog your memory, the 2023 Budget promised parents that 20-Hours ECE would be made ‘free’ and extended to 2-year-olds. It also promised that all teacher-led centres who opted into full pay parity would receive the same funding as kindergartens and be required to pay their teachers on the full kindergarten pay scale. 

Next year most of us probably will have forgotten what was announced today, but right now we are all very interested in Budget 2024.

Budget 2024

ECE gets crumbs from the Education Table. Government’s spending priorities are not on the early years of education. Vote Education spending is primarily targeting schools. For example, there are $20,000 packages in the Better Jobs Programme going into Primary, Intermediate and Secondary schools which excludes ECE.

The government has set aside $1,239m ECE teacher supply supports but not until 2027/8.

Pay parity funding allocations of the previous government have not been removed/ reprioritised. But it does not appear that there is any new allocation of funding for pay parity to match that of kindergartens and for pay rates in education and care centres to keep up with the rising rates of teacher pay in schools and kindergartens.

FamilyBoost childcare tax rebates of up to $150 per fortnight for eligible families are confirmed. This is no surprise as it was announced earlier this year – details are available here.

Last Budget
2023/24
Final Budgeted $000
This Budget
2024/25
Budget $000
Subsidies paid to licensed ECE services 2,596,3722,794,00
Cost adjustment component for ECE services26,219 (not final)54,167
Support for ECE providers who need help12,1227,500
Delivery of specific programmes and providing advice and support
that enhances the role of parents/caregivers in the development of their children.
8,9748,974
Lunches for children in low equity ECE centres. The Budget appropriation figure amount shown in the budget document is for ECE and schools combined. Hon Seymour has earlier committed to spending $4m on ECE lunches per year ($8m over 2 years)
Ngā Puna Reo o Aotearoa – Ongoing Funding407408
Drawdown of Funding for Kōhanga Reo Kaimahi Pay Scheme9,00010,544
Drawdown of Funding to meet the costs of the Kindergarten Collective Bargaining Settlements107,167182,235
Playcentre sustainable funding – this looks like it is a new Budget appropriation 1,903

Spending Cuts

We are currently trying to find out more information regarding cuts.

  • It looks like the Targeted Assistance for Participation Funding has gone i.e. been reprioritised. $2,640m to support ECE providers in 2024/5 and future budgeted amounts have been removed.
  • It looks like the Ngā Puna Reo o Aotearoa funding for professional development and support has gone

Appropriations from the 2023 Budget initiative to make 20-Hours Early Childhood Education free and extend the funding to 2-year-old children has been reversed.

The forecast for the take-up of Early Childhood Education by children/families has been revised resulting in a $3.776 million decrease (or saving).

Important Event

The Early Childhood Summit is on Monday 10th June in Wellington.  

Be part of this important occasion, helping to guide and set the future course for early childhood education and care. It’s going to be such a great day of discussion, debate, learning, sharing.

Register now.  Contact our office or go to the registration form here and add your details and we will be in contact with you.

Early Childhood Summit

You are warmly invited. Register now online or email our office and request details.

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