Skip to Content

Children & families

We work with councils in all areas of early childhood policy development and implementation to ensure a strong voice for local government and improved outcomes for families and children

Our collaboration and partnerships with a range of other organisations provides us with an enhanced capacity to influence and achieve outcomes in the Early Years sector.

We advocate on behalf of local government with other sectors and levels of government.

Our key areas of responsibility are:

We are actively campaigning for national kindergarten reforms.

Productivity Commission Inquiry into Childcare and Early Childhood Learning

In December 2013 the Commonwealth Government released a Productivity Commission Inquiry into Child Care and Early Childhood Learning.

A second report outlining the draft findings was subsequently released in July 2014. 

The Productivity Commission provided the Commonwealth Government with its Overview and Recommendation Report in October 2014.

MAV has provided submissions responding to each of the reports:

Meeting with Minister Mikakos

The MAV met with the Victorian Minister for Families and Children, Jenny Mikakos to discuss the Maternal and Child Health Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), and the unit price increase due from July 2015.

​The Minister reiterated that MCH is an important service. At this stage the State are proposing to rollover the MoU for a further year, while a major review of the funding model and price is undertaken with the MAV and councils in the lead up to the 2016/17 budget, with the aim of placing the service funding on a more sustainable model.

The estimated shortfall in the State’s contribution to the 50/50 agreement is currently about $10 million. This service is a critical area in which the quality and level of service would deteriorate if the State is unable to maintain its funding share as committed to under the MoU.

We also raised the potential financial impacts on councils and communities due to uncertainty around the Commonwealth's funding for 15 hours of kindergarten, changes to the kindergarten child to staff ratios in 2016, as well as the implications of the kindergarten industrial agreement. The Minister expressed her appreciation for the work of councils and the MAV on advocacy to the Commonwealth regarding the 15 hours of kindergarten campaign.

MAV Capital Advocacy Plan

Thank you to all who provided information to the MAV through the early years capital survey. The survey indicates that Victorian councils invest over $2 billion in kindergarten and maternal and child health facilities, and are planning to continue investing.

The 60 councils who responded also foreshadowed that a further $260 million is needed to meet growth, and at least $30 million is needed to meet new ratio change requirements for 2016.

The average age of council facilities is 35 years; most councils advised that the costs to maintain ageing facilities is of major concern for their future capital works planning processes.

The information provided is enabling the MAV to work in partnership with the Victorian Government on a strategic approach to future capital funding and planning.

For further information, contact Jan Barrett.

Local government support for children, young people and families

This 2011 report documents the contribution made by Local Government in helping families to raise their children, and assisting young people to make their own way in the world.

Read: Local government support for children, young people and families (Word - 318KB).