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In 2011, an estimated 945 534 children aged 0-12 years attended government-approved child care in Australia. The number has increased since 2009. Overall, approximately 1.9 million children receive some kind of formal or informal care.
Grandad and grandchild iStockphoto.com/Pamspix

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In 2011, grandparents provided care for
936 000 grandchildren (26% of all children aged 0-12 years).
 

The number of Australian children attending child care has increased dramatically in the past few years, because of the growing number of working parents. This has led to an increased demand for child care places.

For many families, child care is a juggling act. Many use two or more forms of care – often a formal service, such as a long day care centre, along with support from relatives, friends, nannies or babysitters.

In 2011, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, families of children aged 0-11 years used child care in the following ways:

In 2011, approximately 370 000 children attended more than one form of child care each week. Reasons parents gave for this were that:

  • there were limited hours available at the service of their choice
  • they wanted their child to have contact with other family members
  • they couldn’t afford to use more formal child care
  • having two forms of care was more convenient to the family
  • they wanted their child to experience a variety of situations and relationships.
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  • Last Updated 08-08-2012
  • Last Reviewed 01-03-2011
  • Australian Bureau of Statistics (2011). Childhood education and care, Australia, June 2011. Retrieved May 22, 2012, from
    http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Products/4402.0~June+2011~Main+Features~Main+features?OpenDocument.

    Australian Bureau of Statistics (2008). Childhood education and care, Australia (Reissued). Retrieved August 10, 2011, from http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/DetailsPage/4402.0June%202008%20(Reissue)?OpenDocument.

    Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (2006). 2006 Australian Government census of child care services. Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia.

    Australian Government Department of Family and Community Services (2004). 2004 Australian Government census of child care services. Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia.

    Australian Government Productivity Commission (2010). Report on government services 2010: Children's services (Chapter 3). Retrieved December 2, 2010, from http://www.pc.gov.au/gsp/reports/rogs/2010.