New Kindergarten For Walter And Eliza Hall Institute

30 March 2017

Scientists and staff from Australia’s oldest medical research institute will have access to a brand new kindergarten and day care centre, thanks to the Andrews Labor Government.

Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos today turned the sod to mark the start of construction of the Early Childhood Education and Care Centre at Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research, in Parkville.

The five-storey centre is the first facility of its kind provided by an Australian medical research institute as part of its commitment to gender equity. Access to childcare has been identified as a major obstacle to women's career development in medical research.

Each level of the early childhood centre will be purpose-built to meet the needs of specific age groups. All levels will have access to shaded, external play areas. The ground floor will provide a flexible, multi-purpose space suitable for combined activities, play groups, health and consultation services.

The Labor Government provided $650,000 for the new kindergarten through the New Early Learning Facility grant program, with the institute contributing most of the remaining cost for the $8 million centre.

We are investing $60 million to build and upgrade hundreds of children’s centres and kindergartens across Victoria, including $10 million targeted at Melbourne growth areas.

Infrastructure projects such as these ensure local children’s services have the space and flexibility they need to deliver 15 hours of kindergarten alongside a range of other vital early years programs.

Children who attend 15 hours per week of preschool do better at school, have improved job prospects and are set up to achieve their full potential.

The National Partnership Agreement on Universal Access to Early Childhood Education, which funds 15 hours of preschool per week is due to run out this year.

The Liberals want to cut that vital start children need at the most important stage of their development.

Scientists at the Walter and Elizabeth Institute of Medical Research undertake research in a range of areas, preventing and treating diseases including Breast, Ovarian and Blood Cancers, Type 1 Diabetes, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Coeliac Disease and Malaria.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos

“We know that better quality early childhood services mean a better start in life for our kids – which is why we are investing in building and upgrading hundreds of kindergartens across Victoria.”

“The new Early Childhood Education and Care Centre will support the Institute’s scientists, helping the Institute to retain valuable employees and to reach its important research objectives.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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