Starting kindergarten

Stonnington has a range of kindergarten programs delivered by qualified early childhood teachers.

Types of programs

You can choose from two different kinds of kindergarten to suit your child and your life situation.

Sessional programs operate within school terms. Usually, the programs have a parent fee contribution paid per term every three months. This fee is waived for eligible families.

  • Four-Year-Old Kindergarten programs run for 15 hours per week over two or three days.
  • Three-Year-Old Kindergarten programs are available for up to 15 hours per week, with program duration varying across services.

Kindergarten programs in long day care (LDC) settings can provide flexibility for parents, carers and guardians who have commitments during standard working hours. Long day care centres typically operate for at least eight hours a day for a minimum of 48 weeks per year and charge daily. Children can access a funded kindergarten program at many long day care centres.

Children are only eligible to be enrolled in one funded kindergarten placement at a time. Families, however, can be enrolled with kindergarten and long day care services consecutively if the child is not accessing a funded kindergarten placement at both.

When to send your child to kindergarten

Your child should turn three by 30 April of the year they start a Three-Year-Old Kindergarten program.

Your child should turn four by 30 April of the year they start a Four-Year-Old Kindergarten program.

The table below will help determine when your child can attend either program. More information can be found on Victorian Government's when to start kindergarten.

Your child’s date of birth is between Three-Year-Old Kindergarten Four-Year-Old Kindergarten
1 May 2018 to 30 April 2019 2022 2023
1 May 2019 to 30 April 2020 2023 2024

Birthdays between 1 January and 30 April

For children who turn three years old between 1 January and 30 April the year they start Three-Year-Old Kindergarten, this may affect their starting date with the service or attendance fees.

Families are encouraged to review the program offerings at their preferred services before applying to confirm how this will affect their child’s starting date.

Child immunisation

According to the No Jab, No Play law in Victoria, your child must be fully vaccinated to start kindergarten. You should ensure that your child’s immunisations are up to date and you have a copy of the Immunisation History Statement before starting the enrolment process in October.

Children experiencing vulnerability and disadvantage can enrol in a service without providing proof of up-to-date immunisation. The child must be vaccinated and provide an Immunisation History Statement within 16 weeks of enrolling.

For more information on immunisation requirements, visit the Victorian Government's website.

Priority placements

Information provided during registration helps prioritise your child’s placement.

If there are more registrations than there are places available, children will be prioritised according to the Education Priority Access Guidelines.

The government prioritises children who:

  • require additional assistance to fully participate in the kindergarten program
  • require a combination of services that are individually planned
  • have identified a specific disability or developmental delay.

    The City of Stonnington follows the Priority of Access guidelines which supports:

  • the inclusion of children with the above disability or medical needs
  • children of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander background
  • asylum seekers and refugee families with an appropriate visa
  • children known to Child Protection.

Contacts and resources

Navigating your child’s start to kindergarten can be daunting. For more information about your child’s kindergarten journey, including tips for starting kindergarten and how to choose a kindergarten, visit Victorian Government and Starting Blocks.

Who else can I talk to?

Contact Contact number Email
Stonnington Central Registration Officer 03 8290 1690 centralregistration@stonnington.vic.gov.au
Stonnington Maternal and Child Health Services 13 22 29 mchadmin@stonnington.vic.gov.au
Pre-school Field Officer (southern) 03 9192 8100 psfo.southmelbourne@vt.uniting.org