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Can't make it to a Jobs For Families presentation? Here are the slides.

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With only a limited number of presentation dates, the Jobs for Families information sessions are out of reach for many educators and providers.  To make it as easy as possible for you to catch up, We’ve put together a slideshow for you from the official JFF presentation, and combined it with notes from our two insiders: Amanda Archer who attended the Canberra session, and Nathalie Dupavillon who squeezed into the fully-booked Sydney session.

You can also now download the full set of presentation slides from the Commonwealth Department of Education website.

 

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Jobs For Families Presentation Slides June 2017

From Nathalie

I attended the Sydney information session recently, which was very crowded.  The department spokesman was certainly aware the information sessions were not reaching the widest possible audience and said they would be coming back to the sector to find out in what ways services wanted to receive the information.  This could mean more webinars, online discussions or face to face sessions.

They have asked for more input to help them  improve their understanding and requested that you:

  1. If you are an approved provider, ensure you are also registered to receive the CCMS Newsletters via your message preferences in your software, or by emailing this address and asking to be added to the circulation list ccmshelpdesk@education.gov.au
  2. Read the information at https://www.education.gov.au/jobsforfamilies.
  3. New integrated Child Care  IT systems will be part of the solution to help services collect the right data.
  4. Watch for announcements about a JFF help desk that will be set up early 2018 to provide training in some of the new processes.

I can’t add much more to Amanda’s report (below) but I highly recommend you read her notes again and check the slideshow here or on the department’s website!

From Amanda

Our Community Services Management Co-ordinator, Amanda Archer, headed to Canberra [on 25 May] for the first of the national series of information sessions the Department of Education is running on the Jobs for Families Child Care Package.  These are her notes written at the airport for us before heading back to Sydney so you can get the inside briefing on how the very first session ran.

I travelled to Canberra today for the first Jobs For Families Package Information Session held by the Department of Education, joining around 100 others from many parts of the country. Additional sessions are being held around Australia over the next fortnight.

Are you planning on attending a session? Buckle up!

Depending how involved you have been reading the JFF legislation and updates, you might find the sheer amount of information presented a bit overwhelming, or that there are items raised that you weren’t aware of before. At the session today there were a great many slides (and some flicked over very quickly!), active Q&A sessions and also some information shared verbally  that isn’t available as yet anywhere else.

So, if you’re attending one of the other sessions be prepared to absorb a lot. I took photos of the slides so I could match them with my notes later.

My top four points from today’s session are:

  1. ​​Department of Human services will be required to assess and approve ALL applications for Additional Subsidy Wellbeing (replacing SCCB). There is serious concern around the timeframe that this will take.  A new IT system is proposed to streamline the process.
  2. There may be up to 72 ministerial rules that will affect the transition and implementation of the package.  These are a) not yet available, b) still subject to consultation, and c) will only be finalised when tabled in Parliament. The rules include eligibility for families to access the additional subsidy, a critical element that remains a hotly contested topic and will affect vulnerable children across Australia.
  3. The majority of people at my session were not aware of the Child Care Fund guidelines that are currently up for consultation. If this is also a surprise for you, you can find them here.
  4. A new IT system will remove the mandate for services to engage with third party software.  There will be a direct provider portal for services to report on Family Assistance Law requirements.

And here are the other key points I took away from the day:

  • ​​In home care will remain under the package.  The nanny pilot and review of in home care are being analysed and from this a new type of care will be included, called Care in the family home
  • The salary limits, hourly fee cap and rebate cap will all be CPI indexed prior to implementation in July 2018 and annually after that.
  • The hourly fee cap remains a contested issue, with many at this session stating that $11.55 for LDC is not sufficient (FDC $10.70 / OOSHC $10.10)
  • Concerns were raised regarding families that collect their children prior to the close of the service, will their fees change each day? The response given was sessional charges will still remain (reference was made to CCB/CCR currently being set at ‘hourly). If your service’s session time is 10 hours, parents charge will be charged 10 hours regardless of what time they pick up.
  • It was implied that charges will be based on sessions rather than actual attendance HOWEVER there were also comments  about modelling options so watch this space?
  • Families accessing Additional Benefit for Wellbeing, Grandparents (on income support) and Temporary Financial Hardship will receive 100% of the fee rebate up to 120% of the hourly fee cap for 100 hours per fortnight. A change that will affect families from SCCB – If services charge above 120% of the hourly fee cap – is that families will be required pay the difference.
  • The limit of children that services can have accessing additional fee subsidy will be 50% of enrolments.
  • Families may still be eligible to receive Transition to Work subsidy (replacing JETCCFA) for up to 12 weeks after they come off income support to start working.
  • In regard to the activity test with two parent families, eligible hours will be determined by the parent with the lowesthours in recognised activities.
  • Some other notes I took on recognised activities: it will include reasonable time for travel between care and work/study. It includes maternity leave. There will be time limits on some items like setting up a business.  The activities won’t just provide eligibility for care during the time they are undertaken, for example, if you work on weekends, you will be eligible for the rebate during week hours.
  • Families on less than $65,710 will receive 24 hours of care per fortnight with no activity test (as will grandparents with 65% primary care that are not on income support).
  • Significant concern remains regarding the number of vulnerable children that may be closed out of care because their parents do not meet any activity test.
  • Significant concern remains from sector regarding BFF services.  These services will be eligble for CCS, additional subsidy and the Community Child Care Fund Restricted Non-Competitive grant opportunity, however there is continued concern that they will not be able to transition and we may face some closures of these vital services.
  • For the Community Child Care Fund: the Department is estimating an average of $25,000 per grant, and it will be using the ATO definition for not-for-profit services.
  • The Department reminded us that enrolment advances are no longer available from 31/7/17 and it will start recovery.
  • Priority of access will be streamlined from four categories to two.  One will relate to working parents, the second will relate to children at risk.

There was indication at the end of the session that questions being asked at each session may be included in the information provided for future sessions.

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