How will I know if a Centre is right for us?

Making the right choice of Centre for your family is critical. It is recommended to visit any Centre that you are considering to get a feel for the Centre, meet the Educators and ask any questions that you may have.

Click here for a checklist that contains points to consider, or visit the Government website on the subject here.

Has your service been NQS quality rated and what is the rating?

All of our services have been rated as Exceeding the National Quality Standard by ACECQA quality assurance rating system.

What qualifications do the staff have?

Our Educators have a range of qualifications, including Bachelor qualified Early Childhood Teachers, Diploma and Certificate 3 Level qualifications in Early Childhood Education and Care. Our Trainees are studying towards their Certificate 3 in Early Childhood Education and Care.

How many days can my child attend?

At Chatterbox we understand the need for flexible care arrangements for our families. As such we offer not only full-time care (5 days per week), but also part time care (1-4 days per week). These bookings are of a permanent nature meaning that your child’s booked place is guaranteed at the Centre each week and as such fees must be paid regardless of attendance. We are however happy to change your child’s day within a given week subject to availability.

Your child is able to attend for any time within our daily operating hours on their booked day (with the exception of public holidays when the Centre is closed).

How do I pay my fees?

Fees are payable weekly via an automatic debit system, set up forms are provided on enrolment.

If you choose to receive government fee assistance as a fee reduction, these amounts will be credited to your account once the details are received by the Centre from the Australian Government – Family Assistance Office (FAO). For determining your families eligibility for Child Care Benefits please contact the Family Assistance Office on 136150.

What is provided in the daily fees i.e. are food and nappies provided or do I need to supply these?

All meals, bed and cot sheets, nappies and sunscreen are provided daily for all children.

Do you close throughout the year and how long for?

No, we are open 52 weeks a year and only closed on weekends and public holidays.

What if my child is away from the Centre?

If your child will be away from the Centre we request that the Centre is notified as soon as possible. As the Centre is limited by licence to the number of children who can attend each day, we are unfortunately unable to offer a make-up day but we are happy to offer a change of day within the same week subject to availability.

Fees are still payable for absences with the exception of public holidays and pre booked holidays* where a 50% reduction in fees is applied.*See “What happens when we want to take holidays?” for terms and conditions of holidays.

What happens when we want to take holidays?

Your family is entitled to 4 weeks half fees for absence during any one calendar year, calculated on a pro rata basis (e.g. 1 week for every 3 months of attendance). These absences must be taken in week blocks (not individual days) and your annual entitlement must be used by the beginning of the first term the following year.

Will I be charged for public holidays?

As we are committed to providing continuity of care for your child our educators are employed in a permanent capacity and are therefore paid for public holidays. In an effort to meet this responsibility while maintaining affordability for our families, Chatterbox offers a 50 % reduction of the daily fee on these days.

Can I swap days for my child or book my child in for an extra day if I need it?

As the Centre is limited by Licence to the number of children who can attend each day, if your child is absent we are unfortunately unable to offer a make-up day. We are happy however to offer you a change of day within the same week should there be availability. Fees are still payable for any absence from the Centre. If you require care on an additional day, either permanently or as a one-off, please contact the Centre Manager who will confirm availability.

What happens if I no longer need care for my child?

Two weeks’ notice in writing to the Centre Manager is required if you would like to cancel your child’s enrolment at Chatterbox or cancel a day permanently. Please note that if you do not attend the Centre during the notice period, you are unable to claim government fee assistance for that period and full fees will be payable.

What if my child is unwell?

If your child is unwell and unable to participate fully in learning experiences, we request that you keep him/her away from the centre both for the comfort of your child and to minimise the spread of any infection.

If your child is suspected of having or is confirmed to have an infectious disease s/he will need to be excluded from the Centre in accordance with Queensland Health Time Out Exclusion Periods. A medical clearance may be required for your child to return once well. More information can be found at https://www.health.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0022/426820/timeout_poster.pdf

What if my child requires medication whilst at the Centre?

Medication is able to be administered to a child whilst at the Centre provided that the requirements outlined in our Medication policy are met.

My child has a medical condition/allergy, will they still be able to enrol?

If your child has a diagnosed condition (e.g. asthma, allergy, epilepsy) that may cause him/her to become ill at the Centre you will be asked to have a medical practitioner complete a Medical Conditions Action Plan/Anaphylaxis Action Plan.

If your child requires additional support or specialised equipment when at the Centre we will work with you to endeavour to secure appropriate funding through the Inclusion Support Agency (ISA) to provide the additional resources required. Enrolment however is subject to our care environment being able to meet individual needs.

Will I be informed of any illness in the Centre?

When there is a diagnosed case of an infectious illness or disease at the Centre, a notification is sent to families via the parent portal and a notice will be posted in the foyer or entrance of the centre informing parents that a child with the illness has been present at the Centre. Where available, a fact sheet or similar information regarding the illness will also be posted with the notice.

What if my child has an accident whilst at the Centre?

Chatterbox is committed to providing a safe environment for everyone in our Centre however despite our best efforts sometimes accidents do unfortunately occur. If your child is involved in an accident whilst at the Centre, we will ensure that first aid is administered immediately. The Responsible Person in Charge will ensure that you or an emergency contact are notified promptly and details of the accident will be recorded on an Accident Report.

What is your orientation process for new families?

While starting at Chatterbox will be an exciting time for your family, it is natural that children (and their family) may feel some anxiety. To help alleviate this and help children to settle into the Centre we encourage you to visit and spend time with us at the Centre. This will help you and your child feel more comfortable within the Centre environment and get to know our Educators, other children and room routines. At these visits you are welcome to ask any questions about the Centre and educators will begin the conversation with you about your expectations for your child while at the Centre. Please feel free to spend as much time as you choose at the Centre with your child prior to commencing.

What should my child wear?

In order to engage in activities it is important that children are dressed in clothes that allow them to be comfortable as well as being free to experience all activities available. When dressing children for the Centre please consider that clothes (including footwear) should be:

  • suitable for messy play ie able to get dirty/stained;
  • allow children to be comfortable and provide free movement in both the indoor and outdoor environments;
  • easy for children to remove and put on to support self-help skills;
  • suitable for weather conditions;
  • sun safe (please refer to the Chatterbox Sun Safe policy);
  • safe for running, jumping and climbing;
  • free of hoods, drawstrings and cords as these can be a potential choking hazard;
  • clearly named.

When will my child move rooms?

As your child grows and develops at Chatterbox there will be a need to transition into the next age group. Your child’s readiness for such a move will be discussed with you and your child will transition gradually into their new room. Each child’s transition phase is different and we are guided by the child as to the time required for them to gain a sense of belonging in their new room.

Will I be able to visit my child during the day at any time?

Yes, we have an open door policy and families are welcome to visit at any time.  We do also have special events planned throughout the year where families are invited to participate. Ie Mothers Day, Fathers Day, Grandparents Day, Occupations week.

What if I have a problem or concern?

Chatterbox at all times endeavours to provide a service that meets the needs of each family. We do appreciate however that there may be occasions where there is a concern that requires further discussion. Where this is the case, we request that you follow the steps outlined in our Grievance Procedure which is available from the Centre.