As holidays begin and with only one term remaining in the school year many parents are probably already thinking about the start of classes in 2017, particularly those who will have children going to school for the first time.
It's around this time too, even though most enrolments were completed back in May, when many start to wonder whether a child is really "school ready".
And what does that even mean in today's society? Does being school ready mean knowing how to share, how to use a toilet independently, how to follow simple instructions? Or does it mean knowing how to read two year levels above year age, do times tables and being able to play a piano concerto?
An increasing number of parents seem to believe that being school ready should take an academic focus with enrolments of our youngest students into tutoring programs on the rise.
Kumon, one of the world's tutoring multinationals, has 42,000 Australian students and its pre-school enrolments have surged since 2011. And the number of smaller businesses catering to families keen to give their children any head start they can is increasing nationwide. These "kindy bootcamps" prime children with homework and activities in a structured formal environment from as early as three years old.
Parents are paying upwards of $50 an hour, and upwards of $80 for individual attention, for what is classed as the "shadow education system", where families are paying for supplementary learning, whether striving for results, or due to a lack of faith in the system.
Could it be too that the spectre of an increasing number of standardised tests has parents scared? NAPLAN looms large and nobody wants their child to be left behind.
But are we allowing our children to be children?
Children in Australia start school younger than almost anywhere in the developed world, up to two years head of students in top-performing countries such as Finland and Korea.
Dr David Whitebread, a Cambridge University expert in the cognitive development of young children, says children should be engaged in informal play-based learning until the age of about seven. Those who do, the evidence suggests, finish up with a whole range of advantages in the long term.
While the advantages of quality preschool education can not be underestimated, particularly for children from disadvantaged backgrounds, what makes a good preschool education is open for discussion.
And so is hot-housing our toddlers in the competitive world of tutoring thinking it will help them.
While it is vital that Australia maintains its international educational rankings, some are starting to ask whether that comes at a cost for our youngest students.
Parents' desire to give their child every possible advantage in a competitive world is understandable. But pushing the start of formal education back on to ever younger children may also have its costs. In a world where careers are getting longer, burnout becomes an increasing risk. In our attempts to become more competitive we need to also recognise the value of a balanced childhood.