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What is kindy?

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Kindergarten (kindy) is a part-time educational program for children in the year before Prep (the first year of school in Queensland). Kindy is a place where your little one will make friends, explore new environments, build confidence and have fun learning. Kindy offers meaningful experiences and interactions that support your child's early learning, wellbeing and development, now and into the future.

Find out about the different types of kindy in Queensland and how to find a kindy that best suits your child and family.

When can my child start kindy?

Your child can start kindy in the year they turn 4 years old by 30 June, which is the year before they start school.

Use the kindy calculator to calculate when your child can start.

What will my child do at kindy?

Kindergarten teachers and educators use a range and balance of strategies to extend children’s thinking and play in emergent and planned learning experiences across the kindy day. Kindy children have the opportunity for:

  • making friends, collaborating and playing with others
  • imagining and expressing themselves through art, dance and dramatic play
  • building independence through decision making and negotiation
  • strengthening their confidence and resilience
  • communicating ideas and feelings
  • building on their knowledge and exploring new ideas through investigations and play
  • developing early reading, writing and numeracy skills.

Find out more about the kindy learning program.

Did you know, as a parent, carer or family member you are welcome to join in the fun at your child’s kindy? Ask your local kindy how you can get involved.

What will I pay?

Most Queensland families with a child eligible for kindy will find service providers' fees cheaper from January 2023.

The Department of Education is funding sessional kindergarten and long day care services to support the delivery of an approved kindergarten program and reduce out-of-pocket costs for families.

Families can find out how much kindy will cost from 2023 on the Kindy savings webpage.

Families are encouraged to confirm their eligibility for kindy savings and their final out-of-pocket-costs with their chosen sessional kindergarten service or long day care service.

The service provider can also use these results to confirm out-of-pocket costs for a family.

You may be able to access cheaper or fee free kindy if you or your child:

  • identify as an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander
  • hold a current Australian Government Health Care Card (HCC)
  • are a foster or kinship carer (talk to your Child Safety Service Centre)
  • hold a current Australian Government Pensioner Concession Card (automatic Health Contact Centre entitlements)
  • hold a Department of Veterans' Affairs Gold Card or White Card
  • have formal communication, such as a letter, from the relevant agency stating the intent to issue a HCC
  • have 3 or more children of the same age enrolled in the same year
  • have a child who is identified as living in a formal child protection out-of-home-care arrangement
  • are a family and child who have entered Australia under the Australian Government's Refugee and Humanitarian Program, or is in the process of seeking asylum and holds a temporary visa.

In addition, families who attend sessional kindergarten and experience temporary financial hardship may be eligible for the Kindy plus subsidy.

Visit the Kindy savings webpage​​ to learn more about eligibility for Kindy plus and other subsidies available for families from 2023.

What will my child need at kindy?

Every kindy is different, so ask your local kindy what you’ll need. Some items you may be asked to bring are:

  • fresh food in a lunchbox
  • drink bottle
  • spare clothes
  • broad brimmed hat
  • shoes
  • sleep sheet and pillow.

What will I need when I enrol my child?

When you enrol your child at a kindy, you will be asked to provide:

  • your child’s birth certificate
  • your child’s health and immunisation status
  • details of any court orders, parenting orders or plans, details of any special requirements (disability, food allergies or other needs)
  • details of people allowed to pick up your child and who to contact in an emergency.

Learn more about enrolment and preparing for the first day of kindy.

How will we get there?

Some kindies offer bus services for pick-up and drop-off. There are also public transport options available that can help you and your child get to kindy each week. Talk to your local kindy to find the best option for your family.

What does a kindy look like?

All kindy rooms are different, so it’s best to book in a time to take a tour of your local kindy. For ideas on what to look for and ask for, take our 360 virtual tour of a typical kindy room.

Watch the Quality in kindergarten programs video to find out what a quality kindergarten service is, and what the day-to-day workings of a typical kindy room look like.

You can also take a look at our parent checklist when looking for a quality service.

More information

Activities and resources
Find resources (brochures, posters, videos) relating to kindergarten and other early childhood education and care options.

Let’s yarn about kindy
Watch videos of Elders and community leaders in Toowoomba and Cunnamulla yarning about kindy and the importance of culture in the early years.

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Last updated 29 October 2022