Additional Viability Support Payment for Outside School Hours Care (OSHC) providers

Information for OSHC services in Victoria.

About the Additional Viability Support Payment

The Additional Viability Support Payment (AVSP) recognises that Outside School Hours Care (OSHC) services across Victoria have experienced significantly reduced attendances because of the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the move to remote and flexible learning from 20 July 2020 until at least 13 September 2020.

OSHC services across Victoria will be paid 15 per cent of their revenue where their attendance is severely impacted, in addition to the 25 per cent Transition Payment and the Child Care Subsidy (CCS).

The AVSP covers an eight-week period to 13 September for services in metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire. From 6 August 2020, the AVSP will cover a six-week period (to the end of current restrictions) for services in regional Victoria, excluding Mitchell Shire.

Questions and answers

How does the AVSP work?

The AVSP will be paid to OSHC services across Victoria that experience a drop in attendance hours to 40 per cent or less in the relevant two-week period compared with their reference period.

The two-week periods are as follows:

  • 20 July – 2 August 2020 for services in metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire
  • 10 – 23 August 2020 for services in regional Victoria

The reference period is the fortnight that was used to calculate each service’s baseline payments under the Early Childhood Education and Care Relief Package (Relief Package). For most services, this fortnight commenced on 17 February 2020.

The AVSP will be offered to providers with eligible services through a variation to their Transition Payment Grant agreement.

Why is the same reference period being used again?

The reference period being used is the fortnight that was used to calculate each service’s baseline payments under the Relief Package and the Transition Payments. For most services, this fortnight started on 17 February 2020 and ended on 2 March 2020. This fortnight was selected as a point in time where services would have been experiencing attendance at normal levels, before any reductions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Is my service eligible for the AVSP?

If you have an executed Transition Payment Grant agreement and have an OSHC service in Victoria that experiences a drop in attendance hours to 40 per cent or less in the relevant two-week period, compared with their reference period, your service may be eligible for the AVSP.

Services must have also finalised and submitted their session reports for the relevant two-week period.

New OSHC services approved from 13 July 2020 are not eligible for the AVSP.

Other eligibility criteria can be found in the Transition Payment Guidelines.

What do I need to do to receive the AVSP?

For providers to receive the AVSP, services must:

  • be a CCS approved OSHC service in Victoria
  • experience a drop in attendance hours to 40 per cent or less in the relevant two-week period, compared with their reference period
  • ensure the service remains open and providing child care, unless it has been directed to close by a relevant Commonwealth, state or territory government authority or health agency
  • have finalised and submitted their session reports for the relevant two-week period
  • be in receipt of Transition Payments in respect of the service, including meeting all conditions of the Transition Payment Guidelines.

How will AVSP offers be made?

Services that meet the eligibility requirements will receive an email from the Department of Education, Skills and Employment (department) with the AVSP offer. This payment will be made through a variation to the Transition Payment Grant agreement.

From 4 August 2020, OSHC providers with services in metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire received an offer for a lump-sum AVSP.

On 8 August 2020, the OSHC measure was extended to all relevant Victorian services. Offers to these services will be sent in the week beginning 24 August 2020.

The department has established an online process, using DocuSign, where providers can review and agree to offers. Providers will need to declare they meet eligibility requirements.

For a reminder on how to execute a grant offer through DocuSign, please refer to the Process for reviewing and submitting Transition Payment grant offer.

When is the deadline for accepting the offer?

For services in metropolitan Melbourne or Mitchell Shire, offers must be accepted by 5pm AEST 31 August 2020 for the AVSP to be made.

How is the AVSP calculated?

Eligible OSHC services will receive an additional 15 per cent of the average weekly fee charged during their reference period (capped at the relevant CCS hourly rate cap).

The reference period is the fortnight that was used to calculate each service’s baseline Relief Package payment. For most services, this fortnight commenced on 17 February 2020.

How will the AVSP be paid?

Following return of the signed grant variation, the AVSP will be paid into the bank account currently nominated for a provider’s service in the Child Care Subsidy System (CCSS).  Providers are responsible for ensuring their bank account details are correct.

The AVSP will be made as a single lump sum payment and will be made in addition to any Transition Payments services receive.

The AVSP covers an eight-week period to 13 September for services in metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire and will cover six weeks for other services in Victoria.

Payments are expected to occur in the week starting 7 September 2020.

What if I haven’t received my AVSP offer?

If you are a CCS approved OSHC provider in metropolitan Melbourne or Mitchell Shire that previously received CCS or a new provider that was approved during the Relief Package period and you haven’t received an AVSP offer yet, please check that:

  • your CCS status is approved
  • you did not claim or receive JobKeeper from 20 July 2020
  • you have not entered into a repayment plan to repay outstanding monies to the department
  • you have accepted your Transition Payment grant offer.

Next, please check your junk/spam mail and your details in the CCSS.

If your details are not up to date, please update them in the Provider Entry Point (PEP) or third party software. The following need to be correct to receive your offer and for payments to be made:

  • Provider name
  • Provider email address
  • Service email address
  • Legal entity address
  • Service address
  • Bank details.

If you need help, see the task card How to View and Update Organisation Details in the PEP or contact your software provider.

After you update your details please contact the CCS Helpdesk on 1300 667 276 or email at ccshelpdesk@dese.gov.au.

On 8 August 2020, the OSHC measure was extended to all relevant Victorian services. Offers to services outside metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire will be sent offers in the week beginning 24 August 2020.

I have accepted my AVSP offer. Why haven’t I received my payment?

For services in metropolitan Melbourne or Mitchell Shire, if the offer is accepted, and all attendance reports are submitted and verified after the 14 August and on 31 August 2020 at the latest, providers will be paid (one payment for the eight week period) in the week commencing 7 September 2020.

You may not have received your payment for one of the following reasons, you:

  • your CCS status is not approved
  • you have claimed or received JobKeeper from 20 July 2020
  • you have not entered into a repayment plan to repay outstanding monies to the department
  • have not met the compliance check for payment: the total number of hours of care provided to children who attended the service in the fortnight from 20 July 2020 to 2 August 2020 is less than 40 per cent of the total number of hours of care provided to children who attended the service in the service’s reference fortnight.

Please contact the CCS Helpdesk on 1300 667 276 or email at ccshelpdesk@dese.gov.au.

What are the other conditions?

A condition of receiving the AVSP is that the OSHC service/s will remain open and continue to offer care, unless it has been directed to close by a relevant Commonwealth, state or territory government authority or health agency.

To receive the AVSP, providers must meet the AVSP conditions, and continue to meet the conditions of the Transition Payment, which are that they:

  • offer an Employment Guarantee by continuing to employ those employees over the transition period who were working or being paid JobKeeper Payment at the end of the Relief Package
  • cap fees to the level in the relevant Relief Payment reference period
  • not claim JobKeeper for ineligible employees, or for themselves as JobKeeper eligible business participants.

These conditions are in place to protect staff who will move off the JobKeeper Payment and help families who may be doing it tough.

Further detail can be found in the Transition Payment Guidelines.

Do all OSHC services receive the AVSP for eight weeks?

While the current lockdown is for six weeks, it is anticipated that a return from remote education will be staggered and that demand for OSHC services will be impacted beyond the lockdown period. Services in metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire will be paid to cover an eight-week period and other services in Victoria will be paid the AVSP to cover six weeks.

I am a large provider and some of my services are outside of Victoria. Am I eligible for the AVSP?

For a provider to be eligible for the AVSP, your service(s) must be located in Victoria.

You will only receive the payment for services deemed eligible.

What if I have some OSHC services that experience a drop in attendance hours to 40 per cent or less in the relevant two-week period compared with their reference period and some that do not?

You will only receive the AVSP for a service that experiences a drop in attendance to 40 per cent or less in the relevant two-week period compared with their reference period.

Where do I find attendance hours for my reference period to confirm if my service has experienced a drop in attendance hours?

The attendance hours from your reference period (for most services, this fortnight commenced on 17 February 2020 and ended on 2 March 2020) can be found through your third party software. If you are having trouble finding this information please contact your third party software provider and ask them to run a report on your attendance hours for your reference period with data as at 29 March 2020.

The department extracted data for the reference period as at 29 March 2020 as providers are able to vary session reports up until 28 days after the start of the week to which the report relates. Please note that if you varied your session report after the 29 March 2020 you will need to view the data for this period as at 29 March 2020 to check the reference period.

You can then compare the attendance hours in your reference period with the relevant two-week period to work out if your service experienced a drop in attendance hours to 40 per cent or less.

My OSHC service is in an eligible area. If I waive the parent gap fees when children are not attending child care for COVID-19 related reasons from Monday 13 July, will I receive an AVSP?

If you have a service in Victoria, and you waive your parent gap fees when children are not attending child care for COVID-19 related reasons, you will receive the AVSP as long as you meet the conditions outlined in the Transition Payment Guidelines.

What if I am overpaid by the department?

The department will monitor attendance data for services in receipt of the payment and if there is not a drop in attendance hours, your service will be deemed as being incorrectly paid and the department may seek to recover overpayments.

Do I need to stay open to receive the AVSP?

A condition of receiving the AVSP is that the service(s) stay open and continue to offer care, unless it has been directed to close by a relevant Commonwealth, state or territory government authority or health agency.

The current advice from Victoria’s Chief Health Officer and the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee is that early childhood education and care services can continue to operate, with appropriate risk-mitigation measures in place (unless instructed by the Department of Health and Human Services to close).

Information for services located in Stage 3 and Stage 4 lockdown areas

Services located in metropolitan Melbourne are required to remain open to care for the children of permitted workers.

Early childhood services, including sessional kindergarten, in regional and rural Victoria under Stage 3 restrictions, can continue to operate, with appropriate risk-mitigation measures in place.

More information is available on the Victorian State Government Website

Where can I get more information?

OSHC services in Victoria wanting more information can contact the CCS Helpdesk by emailing ccshelpdesk@dese.gov.au or calling 1300 667 276.

Last modified on [264|2457]