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Apply for non-government preschool providers funding

Non-government early childhood service providers may apply for funding to support the cost of delivering a preschool program. This funding is provided by the Australian Government under the Preschool Reform Agreement, which is administered in South Australia by the Department for Education.

Preschool Reform Agreement

The Australian Government has replaced the National Partnership on Universal Access to Early Childhood Education – 2018 - 2021 (UANP) with a 4-year Preschool Reform Agreement (PRA).

From 1 January 2022 to 31 December 2025, the PRA will provide funding to the South Australian government to support the delivery of 15 hours per week, or 600 hours a year of a quality preschool program by a degree qualified early childhood teacher to all South Australian children, regardless of the setting in which programs are delivered in the year before school.

The objective of the Australian Government’s PRA is to facilitate children’s early learning and development and transition to school by:

  • maintaining universal access to affordable, quality preschool program for all children
  • improving participation in preschool programs
  • maximising the benefit of the preschool year by improving outcomes for children.

The PRA has a focus on improving preschool participation and outcomes including for:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children; and
  • disadvantaged children.


To be eligible for funding, service providers must:

  • deliver a preschool program in accordance with the Early Years Learning framework (EYLF)
  • employ a registered, degree-qualified early childhood teacher that, at a minimum, meets the National Quality Framework (NQF) qualification requirements
  • ensure the teacher is registered with the Teachers Registration Board of South Australia (TRB)
  • offer and provide all eligible children in their year before school an annual provision of 600 hours of preschool or 15 hours per week over 40 weeks of the year (note that as per the Education and Children's Services Act 2019, all children are required to be enrolled in and attending school by the time they turn 6 years of age).
  • operate a service that holds a service approval with the Education Standards Board and agree to comply with the conditions set out in the funding agreement.

Funding subsidies

Funding subsidies for the program are detailed in Schedule 3 of the funding agreement. Subsidies available to service providers include the base per capita subsidy paid for every eligible preschool child in their year before school that contributes to the cost of employing a degree qualified early childhood teacher to deliver the preschool program and other associated costs of the program. The base per capita subsidy amount is determined on the category ranking of the service provider (refer Category ranking and remoteness eligibility). Other targeted or specific purpose subsidies that are dependent on certain criteria are listed below.

Targeted child subsidy

Service providers are eligible to receive a subsidy for Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander children or children of families holding one of the following:

The targeted child subsidy must be expended to the exclusive benefit of the specific child attracting the subsidy, such as through a reduction in fees for the family.

Children with a recognised disability subsidy

A subsidy is available to service providers with enrolments of children entitled to a health care card with a CD (child disability) code to provide additional funding support to provide the child with access to and enable regular participation in the preschool program.

See preschool funding for children with a disability for further information.

Remote area subsidy

A subsidy paid to service providers located in remote or very remote areas of the State to contribute to the additional staffing costs for recruiting and retention of early childhood teachers (refer Category ranking and remoteness eligibility).

Category ranking and remote area eligibility

For an indication of the applicable category ranking and remoteness eligibility, see categories and remoteness eligibility by local government area.

Funding claim and payments

Funding for the non-government preschool providers program is paid 6-monthly and based on preschool enrolment data submitted to the Non- Government Preschool Data System (NGPDS) for children in the year before school.  Payments are made via electronic funds transfer.

Preschool data collected from service providers each school term will be used for     calculating grant payments as follows:

  • payments for the first 6 months of the year will be made by 30 April based on enrolment data collected in term 1, with any adjustments as required from the term 4 collection of the previous year.
  • payments for the second half of the year will be made by 30 September based on enrolment data collected in term 3, with any adjustments as required from the term 2 collection.

For guidance on the data collection requirements, please refer to the non-government preschools term data submission instructions (PDF 2.1MB).

Commencement of funding

For guidance regarding the timelines from completion of your application to the commencement of funding, refer to the table below.

Completed application submitted by applicant:

Funding agreement offered by PFU on Head’s approval:

Signed funding agreement executed by Minister:

Funding commences from:

1 November

(previous year)

15 December

31 January

Term 1

1 January

15 February

30 April

Term 2

1 April

15 May

15 July

Term 3

1 July

15 August

15 October

Term 4

Parent disclaimer

Children are eligible to access 15 hours of government-funded preschool per week. Preschool providers, both government and non-government, must make sure that they do not make a funding claim for over 15 hours of government-funded preschool per week.

To assist in this process, service providers must have a signed disclaimer (PDF 309KB) from the parent/s confirming that the child is not enrolled in more than 15 hours.

Privacy statement

Service providers must provide the department with the following information about enrolled children  for funding assessment and reporting purposes:

  • full name of child child’s gender child’s date of birth
  • usual residential address of child
  • full name of child’s parent/s or guardian/s.

Before making a funding claim for a child, the service must ensure that:

Application form

To apply for preschool funding under the Preschool Reform Agreement, please complete the funding application form (PDF 510KB) and return to the Preschool Funding Unit.

Application assessment and funding agreements

Applicants will be advised of the outcome of their application in writing following completion of the department’s assessment process. Successful applicants will be required to sign 2 copies of a funding agreement between the Minister for Education and the applicant. The signed agreements must be returned to the department. Once both copies of the funding agreements have been signed, one copy of the executed agreements will be returned to the funding recipient.

Preschool Funding Unit

Phone: 8226 0095
Email: education.preschoolfunding [at] sa.gov.au