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Affordable pre-school for all
PUBLISHED ON 29 Aug 2019
Come 2020, lower-income families may only need to pay as little as $3 a month for full-day childcare. The monthly household income ceiling for additional childcare and kindergarten subsidies will also be raised to $12,000.
 
This and several other announcements were shared by Minister for Manpower Mrs Josephine Teo, who oversees population matters, Minister for Social and Family Development Mr Desmond Lee and Senior Minister of State for Health Dr Amy Khor during a visit to a pre-school in Punggol on 28 August 2019.

With the higher subsidies, more families will pay between $3 and $390 a month for full-day childcare at pre-schools run by anchor operators that charge monthly fees of $770. With the measures, about eight in 10 young children should have a place in more affordable government-supported pre-schools by around 2025. This is similar to the proportion of population that receives government help in the housing and healthcare sectors.

These new announcements come after the PAP Women’s Wing proposed several recommendations in July, which called for further support to help young families and couples as they seek to start a family.

Separately, there will no longer be an age limit for women undergoing assisted reproductive technology (ART) treatments from January 2020. Currently, Singapore imposes an age limit of 45 years old for women undergoing ART procedures.

Eligible couples undergoing intra-uterine insemination (IUI) procedures at public assisted reproduction centres will also get government assistance.

Mrs Teo said that there is strong interest among Singaporeans to marry and have children. "But it is also a fact that our people are marrying later. And they're also starting families and they're having children later," she added. Mrs Teo hoped the measures will encourage couples to marry earlier and start trying to conceive earlier.

Image from: Minister Josephine Teo's Facebook

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