Long Day Care Vs. Standalone Kindergarten: Choosing the Right Early Childhood Education for Your Child

Navigating the world of early childhood education can be a daunting task for parents and caregivers. With a number of options available, it’s crucial to understand the key differences between long day care services and standalone kindergartens to make an informed decision that best suits your child’s needs and your family’s lifestyle.

Service Structure

Long Day Care: Long day care services such as ourselves at Kenmore Hills Early Learning offer a comprehensive early childhood education and care program, catering to children from birth to school age. They provide flexible hours, typically opening from 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM Monday through Friday, to accommodate working parents’ schedules. This flexibility extends to school holidays, as long day care s remain open, offering extended care options.

Standalone Kindergarten: Standalone kindergartens, also known as preschools, focus specifically on providing an early childhood education program for children aged three to five years. They typically operate during school terms and school hours, offering fixed sessions that usually range from 15 to 25 hours per week. These s are closed during school holidays.

Government Funding

Long Day Care: We receive government funding for their kindergarten programs, providing free kindergarten for eligible children. Parents may also be eligible for Child Care Subsidy (CCS) to cover additional hours of care if needed.

Standalone Kindergarten: Standalone kindergartens also receive government funding for their kindergarten programs, ensuring free kindergarten for eligible children. However, families may need to participate in fundraising activities to supplement the ‘s budget.

Extra Programs

Long Day Care: At Kenmore Hills we offer a variety of programs such as Happy Feet, Billy’s Buddies, and other specialised activities. These programs provide opportunities for our children to explore their interests and develop new skills.

Standalone Kindergarten: Standalone kindergartens typically focus solely on the kindergarten curriculum, placing more emphasis on early literacy and numeracy skills. Extra programs are not as common in these settings.


Long Day Care: Long day cares provide meals for children, we have an on-site chef helping to teach our children about food and nutrition and helping to support our families by saving them the time of supplying food for their littles ones

Standalone Kindergarten: Children attending standalone kindergartens are typically expected to bring their own meals and snacks. This can be an additional responsibility for parents, but it also allows for more control over their child’s diet.

Educators and Staff

Long Day Care: Long day care s employ a mix of bachelor-qualified teachers and Certificate III or Diploma-qualified educators. This ensures that children receive guidance and support from experienced professionals. At Kenmore Hills Early Learning, our team of highly qualified Early Childhood Educators have a great love and passion for educating and caring for children.

Standalone Kindergarten: Standalone kindergartens typically employ a bachelor-qualified teacher to lead the kindergarten program, along with Certificate III or Diploma-qualified educators. The ratio of educators to children is similar in both settings.

Family Considerations

Long Day Care: Long day care s often cater to families with multiple children, allowing siblings to attend the same . This has proved to be very convenient for many of our families.

Standalone Kindergarten: Standalone kindergartens typically focus on a single age group of children, creating a more focused learning environment. However, families with multiple children may need to consider separate care arrangements.

Making an Informed Decision

The choice between long day care and standalone kindergarten depends on your individual family needs and preferences. Ultimately, we recommend that the best way to decide is to visit both types of service and talk to the educators and centre leadership team. Observe the environment, ask questions about the curriculum, and get a feel for the overall atmosphere before making a decision.

Our Kindergarten Program aims to specifically enrich children’s learning in the year preceding Prep. Throughout the kindergarten year children’s right to experience the joy of childhood is fundamental and learning is promoted through play, emergent and planned learning experiences and interactions. Book a tour today and come and see our beautiful service for yourself.