Woodlands - Fees and Payments Policy
Woodlands provides a Quality Education and Care service for children from birth until they begin of Primary School. Under Family Assistance Law Woodlands needs to have a clear statement of how and when fees are charged, invoiced and paid. These processes are put in place to ensure the continued financial viability of the service, and Woodland's obligations to remain solvent.
National Quality Standard (NQS)
Quality Area 7: Governance and Leadership
Governance supports the operation of a quality service
Systems are in place to manage risk and enable the effective management and operation of a quality service
Roles and Responsibilities
Roles and responsibilities are clearly defines, and understood and support effective decision making and operation of the service
Education and Care Services National Regulations
Children (Education and Care Services) National Law NSW
Education and care service must have policies and procedures
For parents to gain a clear understanding of the Service fee structure ensuring children’s fees are paid on time and the procedures followed to recover unpaid fees.
This policy applies to children, families, staff, management and visitors of the Service.
The fee structure of the Service includes:
Fees are charged fortnightly and in advance and vary depending on the Child Care Subsidy. The Child Care Subsidy will be paid directly to Woodlands and applied to a families account as a fee reduction.
Basic requirements that must be satisfied for an individual to be eligible to receive Child Care Subsidy for a child include:
- The age of the child (must be 13 years or under and not attending secondary school)
- The child meeting immunisation requirements
- The individual, or their partners, meeting the residency requirements
Families level of Child Care Subsidy will be determined by:
- Combined family income
- The activity level of parents
- Type of child care Service
- The family are liable for full fee payments until confirmation of CCS eligibility through Xplor and Centrelink.
- Fees need to be kept in advance of a child’s attendance
- Fees are to be paid via the Debit Success direct debit system. Fees are charged weekly and non-payment could result in the cancellation of my child's enrolment and recovery action may be undertaken at the parent's expense.
- Fees are payable in advance for every day that a child is enrolled at Woodlands. This includes absences due to Public holidays, sick days and family holidays but excludes periods when Woodlands is closed.
- Woodlands has a number of fee structures available to ensure families are able to fully benefit from their CCS (Child Care Subsidy) this includes a Standard Daily Fee - charged at 10 hours and Flexible Daily Sessions are available - 6,7,8,9,10,12 hours.
Casual Days & Applying For Holidays
- Families may apply for a Discounted Holiday fee for up to 4 weeks per year.
- Families need to email the service a minimum of 2 weeks in advance requesting the Holiday discount
- Discounted Holiday Fees are charged at 50% of the current daily fee
- Discounted Holiday fees can only be applied to full weeks of care (not individual days)
- Discounted Holiday Fees are unable to be applied in arrears, due to CCS reporting
- Casual days may be offered to families if available within the Service’s license
altering bookings must be communicated via email to the Woodlands Campus and provide 2 weeks' notice
- Swap of bookings is not permitted
Payment of fees
- Fee payments are set up using the Service’s direct debit system.
- Families are required to have a method of Payment saved on the Parent App - Xplor Home for the Woodlands schedule billing which occurs each week on Thursday between (12:00 pm - 3:00 pm)
- Families have 24 hours, 7 days a week access to a live statement via the Xplor Home app or Home web access. All family statements are complete from the beginning of care. The information included in the statement is Booked Days, CCS applied to the account, Payments made, Session summary (including who has signed in and out, and what time (to the second)), and CCS statement of Entitlement in accordance with the fee payment and Regulatory requirements.
- A dishonour fee may apply for direct debit transactions where there are insufficient funds to cover the fees, as per individual banks.
- Bookings are charged regardless of whether the child attends the booking or not
Unpaid Fees and Financial Difficulties
- If a family is experiencing financial difficulties, and struggling with the payment of fees, they are encouraged to contact the Campus Manager so a suitable payment plan can be arranged.
- If required, Woodlands will assist families in consulting with Centrelink to assess eligibility for Additional Childcare Subsidy (ACCS)- Wellbeing, Temporary Financial Hardship, Return to work, and eligible Grandparents
- The Privacy and Confidentiality Policy of the service in line with the Information Privacy Act 200 and Health Records Act 2001 will be complied with at all times in relation to families financial and personal circumstances.
- If a family is unable to pay the required fees via the Direct Debit Method on time, a reminder email will be issued after one week and then again after two weeks, when the fees are still outstanding. A child’s position may be terminated if payment has not been made after the three weeks, to which the family may receive a final letter terminating the child’s position. At this time Woodlands may initiate its debt collection procedure, following privacy and confidentiality requirements, unless other arrangements have been made.
- Woodlands is not licensed or insured to have children on the premises outside operating hours. This is a breach of the Education and Care Regulations.
- A late fee will apply when children are not picked up prior to 6:30 pm. Currently, a fee of $15.00 per 10 minutes block and part thereof will occur.
- A review of the child’s enrolment may occur where families are consistently late.
Centre Closures (advised or voluntarily) during declared outbreaks
- Fees may also be payable if the centre is directed to close or closes voluntarily to contain the spread of a virus. When determining whether to charge fees, the Approved Provider will consider all relevant issues including the likely length of the closure, whether they need to pay staff during the closure, and if they will receive any support from the Government to maintain their financial viability of the business
- Please note “a fundamental principle and requirement under Family Assistance Law is that Child Care Subsidy is always calculated on the actual fee the parent is liable to pay for each session of care.” Source: Child Care Provider Handbook https://www.education.gov.au/child-care-provider-handbook/liability-payment
Change of Fees
- Fees are subject to change at any time provided a minimum of four weeks, notice is given to all families via the Xplor Home App and email.
Termination of Enrolment
- Parents are required to provide two weeks written notice of their intention to withdraw a child from Woodlands.
- If the termination from Woodlands is required without notification, families may lose their Child Care Subsidy resulting in the payment of full fees to be charged.
- Parents are required to complete our End of Enrolment Notification as a formalised process to end the Woodlands Long Dasy Care & Kindergarten Enrolment.
Responsibility of Management
- The Nominated Supervisor is responsible for the billing and chasing of fees.
- Should families wish to discuss fees, they will need to see the Nominated Supervisor.