From 24 January 2022, child care providers can choose to offer a discounted fee to employees with children enrolled at one of their services.
The discount will not affect the employee’s Child Care Subsidy (CCS) entitlement. This measure will support providers to attract and retain their early childhood workforce.
Who can get a discount?
Providers can offer discounts to employees who:
- are employed, contracted or engaged as an educator or early childhood teacher, and
- are working at a Centre Based Day Care or Outside School Hours Care (OSHC) service, and
- have a child enrolled in an early childhood education and care service where they work or is owned by their provider.
A centre director or OSHC coordinator who has an early childhood education and care qualification and is working at a service would be considered an educator or early childhood teacher and be eligible for a discount.
How much can a provider discount?
It’s up to a provider how much they want to discount. The employee must still pay at least 5% of the gap fee.
What is the gap fee?
Families who get CCS must make a co-contribution to their child care fees. They do this by paying the difference between the provider’s fee and the CCS amount. This is known as the gap fee.
CCS is usually calculated on the actual fee a family is charged, after any discounts are applied. This change allows discounts to be applied for employees after CCS has been applied.
Do providers have to offer discounts?
Providers do not have to offer discounts. The measure is optional.
What do providers have to do?
Usually, if a provider offers a family a discount, the provider must report the discounted fee in session reports. The family’s CCS is then calculated based on the discounted fee.
From 24 January 2022, providers can offer a discount to employees and report the full fee. This will ensure the employee’s CCS entitlement is not affected.
Example – how it works
Katherine is an educator at a Centre Based Day Care service. Her average family income is $110,000 and her family’s CCS rate is 71.67%.
Katherine’s child attends 3 days at the same service. The service charges a daily fee of $106.50 for a 10-hour session.
Katherine’s total weekly fee comes to $319.50 ($106.50 x 3). After CCS is applied, the service charges her a gap fee of $90.51 ($319.50 – $319.50 x 71.67%) per week.
From 24 January 2022, the service can offer Katherine a discount on her gap fee. She must pay at least 5% of the gap fee.
If the service offers a discount of $20 per session of care, Katherine’s gap fee would be $30.51 per week.
If the service offers a discount of $30 per session of care, Katherine’s gap fee would be $4.53 ($90.51 x 5%) per week instead of $0.51 ($90.51 – $30×3) as she must pay at least 5% of the gap fee.