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Wait list application fees

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#1 jantb78

Posted 12 February 2013 - 03:54 PM

In the process of looking at childcare centres, I have found that many charge a waitlist application fee, ranging from $15 -$40. I find this disgusting. What does everyone else think?

Edited by jantb78, 27 February 2013 - 07:31 PM.

#2 jewel2

Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:03 PM

Not sure about childcare, but I wouldnt be surprised if its the norm here.

You will find wait lists for schools way more expensive than this.
One local school happily takes large deposits from families knowing they have no available places.


#3 José

Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:07 PM

I think some do it to discourage people from putting their name down at multiple centres when they can onky accept a spot at one centre.

#4 jantb78

Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:19 PM

Does anyone know about the legalities of this practice?

#5 Escapin

Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:23 PM

It's completely legal. And $15 would barely cover the admin time of entering all your details onto the system and then sending you out reminders every six months and then processing those. Why do you think that should all be done for free exactly?

#6 Futureself

Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:32 PM

QUOTE (jantb78 @ 12/02/2013, 04:19 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Does anyone know about the legalities of this practice?

No but I'd be interested to see if it was covered by any kind of legislation. Unfortunately there is probably no mention of it and therefore centres can create their own policy in the absence of a law making it  unethical rather than illegal.

I understand that the practice is to ensure only really interested people apply however given the crisis in many areas of no places then you have to put your name down at multiple centres to give yourself the best chance of getting a spot when you have to have it. Plus, I really don't think it's that hard to offer places to children only for them to say no thanks. Staff simply cross out a name and call the next on the list. DS is on the waitlist of 3 centres and honestly even if they'd charged me a fee to apply I would have probably have paid it as I'm very concerned he won't get in anywhere when I need to return to work.

#7 Futureself

Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:37 PM

QUOTE (Escapin @ 12/02/2013, 04:23 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It's completely legal. And $15 would barely cover the admin time of entering all your details onto the system and then sending you out reminders every six months and then processing those. Why do you think that should all be done for free exactly?

I would say it's part an parcel of running a centre - accepting new families and having administration costs is a given. An extra fee for that is crazy, glad I haven't come across it as yet. We also don't get sent reminders, I have to check-in with the centres every 6 months and confirm I still want to be waitlisted otherwise I'll be removed from the list.

#8 jantb78

Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:41 PM

I would say it's part an parcel of running a centre - accepting new families and having administration costs is a given. An extra fee for that is crazy,


#9 Maple Leaf

Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:42 PM

The early learning centre (affiliated with a local ritzy private school) has a $150 wait list fee. I think it's a joke as well.

I put DD 's name down at C&K for kindy and just paid $5. That's more like it!

#10 ~~HappyMummy~~

Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:58 PM

I paid $20 per child for our local non-community run preschool.  Such is life.

What I found outrageous is that I had to put my son on a wait list for preschool in 2015!?!

#11 SeaPrincess

Posted 13 February 2013 - 11:41 PM

The only time I've ever had to pay a waitlist fee, it was deducted from our first week's fees when we were offered a place.

I've never had any centre contact me again except to offer a place - they all expected that I would phone regularly to keep my name on the list.  Oh, except for the Uni daycare, which sent out a form each semester to update the days required, but in the 3 years I was studying there, we never got a spot.

#12 MadyFez

Posted 17 February 2013 - 06:18 PM

QUOTE (futureself @ 12/02/2013, 05:32 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Plus, I really don't think it's that hard to offer places to children only for them to say no thanks. Staff simply cross out a name and call the next on the list.

This is my life at the moment - Instead of calling one or 2 people and arranging interviews Im ringing 20 people a week where they tell me they have found care elsewhere.

Its frustrating and time consuming.  But part of the job.  Im lucky that our waitlist is so long as we have a great reputation, but still frustrating at the moment.

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