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Charlie R

Moving to Sydney with a 15 month old and a 3 year old - confused about school and childcare

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    My husband has the opportunity to get a job in Sydney and i always said it was the one place i would go... so here we are considering shipping our little family early next year which is rather daunting. My son is 3 (29th May 2014) so i presume he won't be starting school for a while which seems odd as he seems school ready here but that might just be because of the nursery/pre-school he is at here. And my daughter currently does 2 days at a nursery. We're thinking we'll live there for a few years and then return to the UK but i worry about my son being behind in terms of education when we come back because of starting school so much later in Oz. Has anyone found this? and when would he actually start school? I presume we're not entitled to any sort of funding like you get in the UK with the 15 hours. Is there the opportunity for them both to do morning child care on a few days a week? We're look at living in the suburbs around Manly which i presume we need to secure first before even looking at child care places. Thank you for any advice - feeling totally clueless and rather daunted by the prospect! 

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    One assumes you will be going on a 457 Visa in which case you will be entitled to very little and when your little lad is eligible for school - potentially January 2019 but you will probably be advised to wait until January 2020 - you will have to pay $5,000 pa (at 2017 rates) for his schooling. You won’t be entitled to any child care benefits and you will have to pay for preschool sessions. (The cut off in NSW is 31 July but they suggest you hold back kids with birthdays after about March)

    When you return he will probably be quite significantly behind his UK peers but UK schools have reportedly been good at helping kids catch up.

    You will probably be able to get sessional child care - it’s of the order $110-130 per day depending on the centre and the area. 

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    I wouldn’t worry about him being behind when you come back (if you do). If he’s 3 now and you spend a couple of years in oz you’ll be coming back when he’s 5? So he’ll have hardly missed anything. We start kids far too young in school in the uk, enjoy the extra time you have with him, your adventure in oz will be worth a million school days here


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