How child care allocations are made

Placement offers are made when a vacancy matches family's registration. Most offers are made annually between October and November.

All early childhood education and care services are required to comply with government priority of access guidelines:

These are:

  1. Priority 1: a child at risk of serious abuse or neglect
  2. Priority 2: a child of a single parent who satisfies, or of parents who both satisfy the work, training, study test
  3. Priority 3: any other child

Below is addition information about priority criteria:

  • Locally agreed criteria for children not identified as high priority.
  • Service providers may apply one or more locally agreed criteria to prioritise children and determine the order in which offers are made, such as residential proximity or a demonstrable link to the service.
  • This criterion must be documented and communicated with families. Kindergarten places should be allocated in accordance with anti-discrimination and human rights laws.Families who live in the City of Darebin are given additional priority on the registration system.
  • Current families and siblings have priority
  • Criteria scores are calculated based on information recorded on the registration form

Once your registration has been processed

The registration system aligns your registration onto a centralised list taking into account the following factors:

  • your child's age
  • the date we received your registration
  • your preference of chosen services

Darebin’s registration team can let you know the current waiting list size, however it is not possible to tell families their exact position on the waiting list as the list is often changes because:

  • family's priority of access
  • room configurations at services offer different age groups and room sizes
  • individual service vacancies
  • availability of preferred days

Darebin Central Enrolment System: children's wait list

This wait list was last updated 31 April 2023


0 – 1 years

1 – 2 years

2 – 3 years

3 – 4 years

4 – 5 years

Northern section of Darebin

  • Merrilands Uniting Early Learning
  • Darebin Child Care & Kindergarten - Reservoir
  • Oakhill Children’s Centre


52 34 22 12

Middle section of Darebin

  • Nara Community Early Learning Centre
  • Darebin Child Care & Kindergarten - Preston


67 51 30 12

Southern section of Darebin

  • Annie Dennis Children’s Centre
  • Merri Community Child Care Centre
  • Raleigh St Community Children’s Centre


260 159 83 33


331 379 244 135 57

When will my child be offered a place?

Due to a range of factors, it is difficult to predict the exact length of time before an offer is made.

The majority of offers for childcare are made annually between October and early-December in preparation for care commencing the following January. Vacancies at services occasionally occur throughout the year, however an offer is only made when a vacancy matches your requirements as outlined on your registration .

Families should visit their preferred child care services before submitting applications. Most child care centres would prefer visits before October each year.

The number of vacancies at each service and within each room determines how many places can be offered.

More information

If you would like to speak to someone about the allocation process, please contact us:

Darebin Registration Team
Phone: 03 8470 8825