Guide to the Childcare Subsidy

The Child Care Subsidy is a government payment that reduces a family’s out-of-pocket costs for childcare. Each family’s Child Care Subsidy covers a percentage of their childcare centre’s daily fees.

What is the Child Care Subsidy?

The Child Care Subsidy, also known as CCS, is a government payment that reduces out-of-pocket costs for childcare.

Your family’s subsidy percentage is paid directly to your childcare provider. This is passed on to families as a fee reduction.

Families pay the “gap fee” between the daily fees charged and the subsidy amount. This is indicated on your fee invoice.

Centrelink withholds 5% of your Child Care Subsidy payments to accommodate for any changes to your expected and combined household income. This helps to reduce the likelihood of you getting an overpayment.

If you’re new to childcare, we recommend that you apply for the Child Care Subsidy as soon as possible.

Factors that Impact the Child Care Subsidy​

Number of

You may get a higher Child Care Subsidy if you have more than one child aged 5 or younger in care.


Families that earn less than $354,305 per year may be eligible for the Child Care Subsidy.


You need to complete a recognised activity to be eligible to receive the Child Care Subsidy.

Rate Cap

There’s a different hourly rate cap depending on the type of approved child care you use.

Child Care Subsidy Calculator

Absences and the Child Care Subsidy

The Child Care Subsidy will be applied to your daily fees if your child is absent for up to 42 initial absences. Normal daily fees are applicable if your child is absent. Please advise us if your child will be absent so we record their attendance correctly.

You can get up to 42 allowable absence days per child each financial year. These absences can be used for any reason, including a local emergency. If you reach your allowable absence limit, you may get additional absences in some cases. Reasons may include:

  • Child or carer is ill
  • Child attends preschool or a pupil free day applies
  • Public Holiday
  • Declared local emergency

Please note that your child must physically attending the centre on their first and last day of enrolment to be eligible to receive the Child Care Subsidy.

If you leave Australia to live in another country, your subsidy will stop when you depart.

If you travel for a short term, you’ll get your subsidy for up to 6 weeks. But you must be paying for child care in Australia while you’re overseas.

After 6 weeks your subsidy will stop.

Your payment will also stop when you depart if all of these apply:

  • you travel for more than 6 weeks
  • you return to Australia
  • you then leave again within 6 weeks of that return.

Confirming Your Child’s Enrolment with Centrelink

Before the Child Care Subsidy can be paid, families must confirm their child’s enrolment details in the Centrelink App.

Before you confirm your child’s enrolment, please check that the fees and care sessions match your enrolment details.

If your child is currently attending another childcare service, please note that confirming the enrolment with Bright Steps Academy will not effect any subsidies with the current centre.

Please note that the enrolment start date displayed on your Centrelink account is the date the enrolment was submitted. This is done to ensure that families receive their Child Care Subsidy from their child’s start date.

If the information or fees in the enrolment details don’t match your enrolment details, speak to our Centre Director and we will fix this for you.

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We would love to hear from you to learn more about your family’s early education and childcare needs. We look forward to becoming your childcare provider!

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