COVID-19 restrictions and early childhood

To slow the spread of COVID-19, state and territory governments may impose restrictions on local communities. This may affect how child care is delivered.

This page provides information on Australian Government measures to support the early childhood education and care sector in restricted areas. We strongly encourage services to stay informed about the situation in their area, and the impact on their operations, from official government sources and websites.

On this page:

Updated 21 July 2021

National

Use the COVID-19 restriction checker to find out about restrictions in your state or territory.

This resource is administered by the Australian Government Department of Health.

New South Wales

On 26 June, the New South Wales Government announced a lockdown period for Greater Sydney because of a COVID-19 outbreak.

On 26 June, we declared a Local Area Emergency (LAE) to support services in affected Local Government Areas (LGAs).  Read about the LAE declaration.

On 7 July, we extended the LAE in line with the extension of the lockdown period.  Read about the LAE extension.

On 15 July, we further extended the LAE in line with the extension of the lockdown period.

From 19 July, child care services in NSW LGAs subject to stay-at-home orders can waive gap fees for parents on days they choose to keep their children at home. Read about the LAE extension and gap fee waiver.

On 20 July, the NSW Government announced a seven-day lockdown for the Orange, Blayney and Cabonne Local Government Areas. Read about this.  

On 30 July, we extended the LAE in line with the extension of the lockdown period. Read about the LAE extension.

The NSW Government is providing financial assistance, support measures and tax relief to help businesses and people across the state impacted by the current COVID-19 restrictions. Further information is available at the NSW Government website.

Go to the NSW Government COVID-19 response website for local updates

Victoria

On Thursday 27 May, the Victorian Government announced a lockdown for all of Victoria. We declared a Local Area Emergency (LAE) to support services in Victoria. The LAE ran from 28 May to 30 June 2021. Read about the LAE in Victoria.

On Thursday 15 July, the Victorian Government announced a five-day lockdown for Victoria from 11:59pm Thursday 15 July.

On Tuesday 20 July, we declared a LAE for all child care services in Victoria for the period Friday 16 July to Tuesday 27 July due to the seven-day extension of the state’s lockdown. Read about this

Go to the Victorian Government COVID-19 response website for local updates

Queensland

On 29 June, the Queensland Government announced a lockdown period for parts of Queensland. Read what this lockdown meant for child care.

Go to the Queensland Government COVID-19 response website for local updates

Western Australia

On 28 June, the Western Australian Government announced a lockdown period for Perth and Peel. Read what this lockdown meant for child care

Go to the WA Government COVID-19 response website for local updates

South Australia

On Tuesday 20 July, the South Australian Government announced a seven-day lockdown for South Australia. Read about this.

Go to the SA Government COVID-19 response website for local updates

Tasmania

Go to the Tasmanian Government COVID-19 response website for local updates

Australian Capital Territory

Go to the ACT Government COVID-19 response website for local updates

Northern Territory

On 29 June, the Northern Territory Government announced a lockdown period for parts of the Northern Territory. Read what this lockdown meant for child care.

Go to the NT Government COVID-19 response website for local updates

Border restrictions

Information about border restrictions is available on state and territory government websites.
Here are some helpful links by jurisdiction:

More information

Providers and services can email ccshelpdesk@dese.gov.au or call 1300 667 276.
Parents looking for care can search Child Care Finder.