To: Hornsby Shire Council



To Hornsby Shire Council Mayor and Councillors

We ask that councillors of Hornsby Shire Council oppose the proposal to adopt a commercial approach for the determination of rent for West Epping Pre-school (a community based not-for-profit preschool) as outlined in the Hornsby Shire Council Draft Community and Cultural Facilities Plan February 2015.

Why is this important?

Hornsby Shire Council is looking to increase the rent for West Epping Pre-school to market rate. This will lead to a substantial increase in the current school fees and/or selling off the community preschool to private operators, which will mean the loss of an affordable preschool option for the local community.

West Epping Pre-school (“WEPS”) is the local community not-for profit preschool and has been operating in its current premise for over 55 years. Over 10,000 local students have transitioned successfully through our preschool to local primary schools.

WEPS has provided and continues to provide a very unique early childhood education program to our local community and many local parents have chosen and continue to choose to send their children to WEPS because:

- We are one of the only few early childhood providers in the Epping area who is NOT a long day care provider.
- A community preschool is a more financially affordable option for parents who cannot afford expensive long day care facilities. (For example, it is an affordable option for parents who are not eligible for Child Care Benefit rebate).
- WEPS provides a high quality preschool program (rated “exceeding” in all 7 quality areas of the National Quality Standard)
- WEPS has played an integral role in the local community for over 55 years and helps create healthy interactive communities in the Epping area even before families enter kindergarten in the local primary schools
- We have a very committed team of staff with 15 years of service as an average across all employees.

With the recent high density developments and rezoning in the Epping area (which will see approximately 8500 new residential dwelling in the local Epping area) as well as the predicted increase in local population, it is clear that there will be an increase in the demand for early childhood education. Hornsby Shire Council should be looking at adding more early childhood education options for the local community, but not at the expense of existing preschools already satisfying a need in the community.

It is the local council’s responsibility to serve the needs of its local community. And Hornsby Shire council should serve their communities by assisting in the provision of facilities and early childhood education to its constituents.

If you want to support the survival of West Epping Pre-School and ensure that Epping continues to have a wide range of options for early childhood education, please sign this petition by Sunday 9 August 2015 and share through social media (eg Facebook) with like-minded community members.

How it will be delivered

We will be forwarding this petition to the Mayor and Councillors before its meeting on 12 August 2015.

Reasons for signing

  • Community based preschools are important in the education of young children and their families. Imagine if schools had to pay high rent before they could begin providing educational programs
  • WEPS offers enormous social benefits to the community and should not be subjected to commercial greed
  • Many studies have shown that children learn the most in the first 5 years of early childhood, that's why early childhood education is crucial for and the success of many our children later in life. Raising rent to market rate will make early childhood education become unaffordable in the Epping area, this has an adverse impact to the quality of our education for the children in the area. I strongly believe should seriously consider this increase.


2015-08-06 23:49:05 +1000

500 signatures reached

2015-08-04 18:09:13 +1000

100 signatures reached

2015-08-04 14:07:15 +1000

50 signatures reached

2015-08-04 12:48:25 +1000

25 signatures reached

2015-08-04 11:59:23 +1000

10 signatures reached