Childcare centres in NSW will increase their fees to as high as $33 per 3-year-old child per day or reduce childcare places if the government requires them to hire more and better qualified staff.
In a survey, 170 NSW centres put the childcare fee increase to 30% or $20.56 per day for a child under 2 years old per day. For a 2-year-old child, the fee will be up 38% to $23.27 per day. The daily fee for a 3-year-old child will be $33.
The Guild Accountancy, which surveyed 170 centres that supply 12,878 childcare places, found that centres will reduce childcare places to lessen the impact of fee increases. However, the consequence will be a shortage in childcare places.
The answer to the possible increase in childcare service is more government subsidy in the form of higher childcare rebates.
Vicky Skoulogenis, spokeswoman of Childcare NSW, which commissioned the survey, said the rebate increase should be 15 percent.
Under a new childcare policy expected from the new government, the ratio of staff to children under 2 years olf would be cut from one carer per five children to one carer per four children starting next year.
For 2 to 3 years old, the current staff-child ratio of one carer for every 8 children will be reduced to one carer per five kids starting 2012.
Childcare centres will also be required to hire fully trained early childhood teachers.