FAQOur most frequently asked questions
Choosing a child care centre can be a difficult decision, so it’s perfectly normal for you to have a lot of questions before preparing to enrol your child! To make it easier, we’ve put together a list of common questions that we hear from parents.
To skip to a section, use one of the links below:
- General information
- Enrolment and fees
- Facilities and inclusions
- Security and procedures
- Health and safety
- Any other questions?
If you have a question that isn’t included on here, please contact us or mention it during your centre tour.
What are your operating hours?
Our operating hours are between 7am and 6pm. We are open Monday to Friday, 52 weeks a year (excluding most public holidays). We are closed on weekends and most public holidays, but depending on demand we may stay open during select holiday periods throughout the year. For more information, please ask your Room Leader or the Centre Director.
What is the easiest way to get to your centre?
As we are located inside the car park area on the second floor of Top Ryde City Shopping Centre, it can be a little confusing to find our centre the first time around. Please see the instructions on our contact page.
What is the age range for enrolments?
We accept children who are between six weeks and school age (usually around the age of six). Our age groups are organised so that children meet, play, learn with other children of a similar age and level of development.
For more information about our age groups, please see our child care services page.
Is there a difference between “child care” and “early learning”?
As the words imply, “child care” is simply taking care of your child during the day, while “early learning” has a focus on education. Lilypad Early Learning Centre combines the two by offering child care services as well as comprehensive early learning programs.
All children experience exponential growth in their development from an extremely early on – this means that the earlier your child starts, the further ahead they will be over time. To ensure your child can get a head-start, Lilypad has created a play-based learning environment where our children can learn essential skills and be prepared for primary school and beyond.
To learn more about our play-based learning program, please click here.
Enrolment and fees
How do I enrol my child?
Before enrolling your child at Lilypad, we always recommend that you book a guided tour first. This gives you the opportunity to be shown around the centre, see what happens day to day and get to know the room leaders and educators.
After the tour, we will guide you through the next steps of enrolment, such as filling out a waiting list form (if necessary), enrolment forms and any other required documents. We also encourage all families to organise an orientation, where your child can get involved with a few of the daily activities with parent supervision.
To a book a tour, please click here.
Does Lilypad have government fee assistance?
Yes! As we are a fully accredited centre, we can accommodate Child Care Benefit (CCB) and Child Care Rebate (CCR) for eligible families. To apply for either CCB or CCR, you will need to produce your Customer Reference Number (CRN). If you are eligible for fee assistance, we’ll handle everything and your statements will be automatically adjusted.
For more information or advice on how to apply, please mention it to us upon enrolment.
What is the fee structure?
Our fees differ based on age group and room. For the most accurate information that applies to you (including possible benefits and rebates), please get in touch and we’ll be happy to guide you through the entire process.
What is the minimum enrolment per week?
In our experience, we’ve found that children – particularly babies – find it easiest to get used to child care when attending at least two days a week.
To make sure that your child quickly adapts and can enjoy their time at Lilypad, we recommend enrolling for at least two days a week. With every child, we work closely with their families to ensure a comfortable transition.
Facilities and inclusions
Do children receive meals throughout the day?
Children receive 4-5 fresh, nutritious meals that are cooked by our in-house professional chef. We shop for fresh ingredients daily and are happy to cater to any cultural, dietary or allergy requirements. We also provide fresh milk that we buy daily – we never use the powdered kind.
For more information, please see our child care services page.
Are nappies and formula provided for babies and young children?
We’ve found that our parents have preferences when it comes to nappies and formula, so we require you to bring both, clearly labelled. When supplies are running low, we will let you know.
Security and procedures
Drop off and pick up
Upon enrolment, all families will receive a welcome email with the security pin code to open the front doors. This is for the safety of our children, their families and our staff.
Signing in and out
When arriving at or leaving Lilypad, everybody is required to electronically sign in and out on the tablets located in the foyer or near the gates.
Notification of absence
If you child will be absent from care for the day, please notify us by 10:00am. This will allow our educators to be prepared and will also assist with daily occurrences such as resources allocation and meal menus.
Casual visits and change of attendance days
If you would like to drop off your child at the centre for a casual attendance day, we are happy to help out, under the condition that we have space available for an additional child. We are licensed to accommodate a maximum of 106 children per day, and will not able to take on casual visits if we are already at capacity.
If you would like to change the days of your child’s permanent attendance, please let us know two weeks in advance via email before the effective date.
Withdrawing your child
If you would like to withdraw your child, we require a minimum of two weeks written notice via email. Once this notice is given, we will issue you with a final fee statement. If you are withdrawing your child to attend formal school, it is required that families give full notice before the Centre closes for the Christmas Public Holidays.
Health and safety
As a standard part of the enrolment and orientation process, we check with families to accommodate for any allergies.
At the moment, Lilypad is a strictly nut-free environment. We currently have children with severe nut allergies, therefore it is extremely important that we follow strict measures. Please be considerate to other families and children by being aware of the food you bring into the centre. Any food items such as nuts found on the premises will be immediately discarded for our children’s safety.
If your child requires it, we can assist with administering their medication throughout the day. Please ensure that your child’s details are filled in on our Medication Register, and that all medication is clearly labelled. To ensure that the medication will be administered, please hand the medication directly to your Room Leader at the centre.
Please note that medication can only be administered if it has specifically been prescribed by a medical professional.
As part of the enrolment process, families are required to provide a copy of the child’s ACIR (Australian Childhood Immunisation Register) immunisation status. These records must be updated throughout your time at the Centre.
In the case that your child becomes ill during the day, we will contact you as soon as possible to inform you and discuss the situation. If medication needs to be administered, we will seek your permission before doing so. If we believe that your child is too ill to remain at the centre, we will ask you to arrange for pick up as soon as possible.
Although inconvenient, we strongly suggest that your child remains at home until they recover. This is for the safety of the other children, families and staff. If your child’s condition is contagious, please notify the centre immediately as we are required to inform other families. Upon your child’s return, we will require a clearance letter provided by your Doctor.
We have Exclusion Policy Guidelines for specific illnesses that can be found in the Parent Handbook, provided to all new families.
Communication with families
In order to keep you fully informed about your child’s day, information such their daily journals, routines and learning observations can be found in our Parents Portal.
Every fortnight, we email out our “Lilypad Lowdown”, as well as any important updates as they become known. For any other information, we encourage you to speak to the Centre Director, Room Leaders or our educators in person. Alternatively, you can contact us by phone or email to discuss your child’s progress, relationship and experiences.
Any other questions?
If you have a question that isn’t included in our FAQ, the best thing to do is to organise a free guided centre tour with us. This gives you the chance to see the centre for yourself, observe some of the morning routines, and ask any questions you might have to our Centre Director and Room Leaders.
Our opening hours are from Monday to Friday, from 7am to 6pm.