Quality out of school hours care [OOSH] is critical for inner west families and for families across New South Wales.
OOSH services are much more than babysitting services to help working parents. Quality OOSH extends learning throughout the day, engages and activates kids in arts, crafts or sport and, most importantly of all, provides kids with a chance to play together after school.
The former Marrickville Council was a leader in the provision of early learning education. I am pleased to see that these programs continue under the amalgamated Inner West Council.
The Inner West Council continues to run quality OOSH services at Marrickville West Public School, Ferncourt Public School and Wilkins Public School.
However, Inner West Council OOSH recently lost tenders at Stanmore and Camdenville public schools, causing significant concern for parents.
I share their concern that there appears to be a push towards privatising services across New South Wales.
The Department of Education's tender processes unfairly privilege private operators over community and council‑run services. We cannot let private interests creep into our playgrounds.
I commend the strong community campaign from local parents and carers in opposing the recent tender of services.