GROWING concern over the future of 15 hours per week for kindergarten has led Bendigo's three Labor MPs to ramp up a campaign against possible federal government cuts.
The Commonwealth's funding of the program will expire this year, meaning only 10 hours per week would be funded.
In the lead-up to the federal budget, Member for Bendigo Lisa Chesters and state counterparts Jacinta Allan and Maree Edwards have visited a number of Bendigo kindergartens and preschools to talk to parents.
Ms Chesters said the uncertainty was causing anxiety among staff and parents.
"The centre staff and managers are very anxious that if funding is discontinued, they will have no choice but to put the cost back on parents, many of whom will be forced to take their children out," she said.
The three MPs visited White Hills Kindergarten last week with Loddon Mallee Preschool Association CEO Phil Hocking and City of Greater Bendigo mayor Peter Cox.
Last year, Mr Hocking said the federal government needed to announce whether it would continue to fund the extra five hours of kindergarten by February this year.
He said preschools and kindergartens needed the funding certainty to help plan their budgets.
The federal government announced it would continue the funding for 2015, but has yet to make a decision over future years.
It provides 35 per cent of the funding, while the state government contributes 65 per cent.
Ms Allan said the 15 hour program, which started in 2009, had been a success.
"Here in Victoria... the proportion of children attending preschool who are enrolled in a program for more than 15 hours a week has increased from just seven per cent in 2008, to 83 per cent in 2013," she said.
The 24 preschools and kindergartens from Heathcote to Swan Hill would each face different circumstances should the funding be discontinued.