Child care centres set to merge

Burnie City Council runs three long day child care centres under the name of Burnie Children’s Services.

Over the last 12 months Council has seen a decrease in demand for service, a trend being felt across the North-West Coast.

Burnie Mayor Steve Kons said, “Council’s aim is to provide child care services to meet the demand from the community. Council has a policy that Burnie Children’s Services should be funded by user fees and government subsidies, not through rates revenue. With less children attending our centres, there is less income to cover the costs of running child care centres.”

Council collectively made the decision to combine two long day care centres. Wisteria Lane and Alexander Beetle House will merge on 1 July 2013, with the service being operated from Alexander Beetle House at 34 Alexander Street, Burnie.

Mayor Kons said, “The present demand allows the current amount of children at both of these centres to be comfortably enrolled in the one centre. Without these changes our community would have been required to contribute almost $300,000 towards the cost of providing care. 

“If Council did not make this decision, our only other option would be to increase the fees to our current families to cover costs and we believe families are already struggling and simply can’t afford a rise that large.  

“It needs to be clear that although this plan creates a larger centre, the educator to child ratios will be the same and the families will most definitely receive the same dedicated and caring service they currently receive.” 

Mayor Kons said he was understanding that merging the two centres would be unsettling for families.

“Although this move may seem daunting for families, we hope to make the transition as smooth as possible for the children. Ultimately the care will be the same, the educators will be the same, and child care will remain affordable to our families.”

For further information please contact

Libby Dobson
Communications Officer
Burnie City Council
(03) 6430 5716 or 0448 568 728