Stawell's Marrang Kindergarten students, teachers and educators welcomed the announcement of the first enrolments for Victoria's funded three-year-old kinder programs on Friday.
The kinder program is part of a $5 billion investment from the Victorian government over the next decade to deliver a full 15 hours of a three-year-old kinder program called Ready For School: Kinder For Every Three-Year-Old.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews attended the announcement in Stawell - Northern Grampians is one of the first to benefit from the subsidised kindergarten programs in 2020.
Five other shires including Hindmarsh and Yarriambiack are included in the first roll out with families in a further 15 regional local government areas to benefit in 2021.
Stawell's Stephanie Davis has accepted the position of the educator of the new three-year-old class and said it was a long time coming.
"It's exciting," she said. "During networking meetings with prep teachers in schools, they are excited as well.
"It's going to improve students with school readiness, be more prepared, more socially aware and higher emotional regulation.
"It's going to benefit children in the long run and it will be good to see in the future how it has helped the children.
"Quite a few children don't attend daycare and kinder is their first interaction with other children and teachers.
"Having the three-year-old will give a better transition into kinder which will enable a smoother transition into schools."
Davis has worked for 10 years in the childcare field and will finish her tenure with Northern Grampians Shire Council in time to take on the new role.
"It's been a great opportunity to work in the early years' development with the Shire," she said.
"Working in a different aspect gave me a great understanding of the needs in the region while working with maternal child health nurses, playgroups, kinders, long daycares and the schools.
"It allowed me to see where there was a need and to push for improvements. It's been fantastic to see things from another angle but I really do miss the kids."
Northern Grampians Shire Council Mayor Kevin Erwin said it was exciting for the shire to be one of six across the state to get early access to the subsidised three-year-old kinder reforms.
"It's going to mean that our children will have a major head start in their learning and development with the extra year of kinder, not to mention a whole lot of fun as well," he said.
"I'd like to also take this opportunity to thank our hard-working kinder teachers, who are fully capable of implementing this new program, which will give our young children a tremendous start to their education."
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