Media Release by The Hon Larry Anthony MP

Balga High Child Care in full swing

The innovative child care facility at the Balga High School has already encouraged a number of young mothers to continue their education Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Larry Anthony said at today’s official opening.

“Already half of the available places have been filled which is a very encouraging sign – it means the facility has given these mothers the vital option to stay in school.

“High quality long day care will be provided for up to 17 children. It is believed this is the first ever child care centre located at a high school in Australia.

“Teenage mothers face many barriers without access to services. We know there’s a very real risk that young mothers do not complete their education, and as a result may become socially and economically isolated.

“Through this centre, mothers will have access to long day care for 50 weeks each year. This will help them to manage homework, holidays, appointments and other commitments.

“Another feature of the centre is the Family Support Worker. This Worker will provide educational and skill development programs on parenting and child development, while nursing, chaplaincy, pastoral care and career counselling.

“This is simply a fantastic innovation and one that can only have a positive impact on the futures of these young women and their children.

“The Coalition has provided more child care options for families through the introduction of in-home care, mobile child care, services targeted to meet the cultural needs for indigenous families and new services for rural and remote families.

“Since 1996 we have overseen a net increase of 2,000 child care services and an extra 194,000 places. We now have a record 711,000 children in child care and have committed more than $8 billion for the next four years.

“We have rejuvenated child care so that it caters for the ever changing needs of the modern day Australian family,” Mr Anthony said.