Three and four-year-old kindergarten

Three and four-year-old kinder can provide the foundation that shapes children's future health, happiness, growth, development and learning.

Find out about kindergarten early childhood education programs, that develop strong social skills and encourages a love of learning.

About kindergarten

Kindergarten improves your child’s health and wellbeing, helps them to develop strong social skills and encourages a love of learning. A play-based learning environment promotes healthy development during your child’s most formative years.

Kindergarten can provide the foundation that shapes children's future health, happiness, growth, development and learning achievement at school, in the family, community, and in life in general.

Children who go to kindergarten are more independent and confident and are more likely to make a smooth transition to primary school (Department of Education, Benefits of Kindergarten 2019)

Kindergartens are governed by either volunteer committees, not-for-profit early years managers or private organisations. Kindergartens can also operate in long day care centres.

Read more about kindergarten on the Victorian government website:

3 year old kindergarten

Three-year-olds across Victoria will have access to 5 hours of a funded kindergarten program each week from 2022. This means an extra year of learning, playing and making friends. Research shows that two years of kindergarten are better than one, and a quality kindergarten program boosts children’s learning, development, health and wellbeing outcomes.

To find services offering approved kindergarten programs, visit the Find a kinder program website.

Please contact kindergartens directly to enquire about fees and session times.

4 year old kindergarten

4 year old kindergarten is an early childhood education program delivered by a Bachelor qualified educator for children who have turned 4 years of age by the 30 April in the year of attendance. In Victoria, children attend kindergarten the year prior to staring school and can only attend one funded kindergarten program at a time.

4 year old kindergarten programs receive funding to support children to attend 15 hours per week, during school terms.

Types of kindergarten programs

Sessional kindergarten programs

This is defined as a kindergarten operating daily from a purpose-built building, during school terms. It is generally a program where all children follow the same structure, and experience the same educational program at the same rostered time each week.

Services can offer 4 year old kindergarten programs in a variety of ways including:

  • 5 hours over 3 days per week
  • 7.5 hours over 2 days per week.

3 year old kindergarten programs are normally 5 hour programs on one of the days each week.

Fees will be required to be paid each term of the year. There are 4 terms in each year, so there will be 4 payments each year.

New and closing kindergartens

  • Reservoir East Primary School Kindergarten will be open for 2023
  • Kookaburra Kindergarten at 34 George Street Reservoir closes in December 2022

Integrated kindergarten programs

These are offered in long day care services, where families have access to a 3 or 4 year old kindergarten program with a long day care program within the one service. Programs are also delivered by a Bachelor qualified teacher.

Fee structures will be different when accessing an integrated 3 or 4 year old kindergarten program, which is why it is essential you discuss this with the service. Priority placing is often given to families currently attending the service.

We do not manage or operate kindergartens or long day care services. Speak to services regarding their timetables, group sizes and annual fees.

Download the list and location details of early childhood education and care services in Darebin or download our map of child care services and kindergartens in Darebin.

Immunisation - the "No jab, no play" legislation

For your child's enrolment at kindergarten to be confirmed, you will need to provide the kindergarten service with evidence of your child’s up to date immunisation statement.

You must have your child's current immunisation history statement from the Australian Immunisation Register. The statement must show that your child is either:

  • up to date with all vaccinations that are due for their age, or
  • up to date with the vaccinations they're able to receive.

The immunisation history statement from the Australian Immunisation Register is the only document accepted for enrolments. Letters from GPs or local councils are not accepted.

You can get immunisations or check your vaccination status through the Darebin Immunisation Service.

Find out more about the No Jab No Play legislation on the Better Health Channel or Australian Department of Human Services.

How to register your child for kindergarten

We operate a registration system for a number of services operating across Darebin. Completion of a registration form does not guarantee a kindergarten placement.

Find out more about registering your child and kindergarten fees.

More information

Kindergarten registration team

Phone: 03 8470 8825

Complaints about Services

Darebin City Council does not own or operate any Early Years services. The Services in the Darebin area are managed by a range of providers. These include Parent Committees of Management as well as Private operators and Early Years Management.

If you have any concerns or complaints about the care provided at the service you attend your first point of call should be to approach the service. Your service is required to have a complaint procedure and policy. These should be available to you on the services website, in their handbook or on display in the foyer. The policy should be made available to you on request.

Find out more on the Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority website.

If you would like to then take the complaint further, you can make a complaint to the Department of Education and Training.

Registering for kindergarten in Darebin
What you should do when you're thinking about sending your child to kindergarten