Enabling licensed home-based early childhood education services to offer out of school care at the same time

New legislation

New legislation enables licensed home based early childhood education (ECE) services to offer out-of-school care at the same time that they offer ECE, under certain conditions, and where they have the capacity and capability to do so. The enabling legislation is found in section 309 and 317A of the Education Act 1989. The amendment to the Education Act 1989 was made by way of the Education Legislation Act 2016 that came into force on 29 October 2016.

Previous situation

Previously, licensed home based ECE services were not able to offer out of school care at the same time that they offer ECE.

Impact of the legislation

The new legislation enables licensed home based ECE services to offer out of school care at the same time that they offer ECE, under certain conditions, and where they have the capacity and capability to do so.

The conditions for a home-based ECE service to offer out of school care at the same time as ECE are as follows:

  • Up to 6 children (aged 13 or younger) will be able to be present in a home.
  • Of these 6 children, up to 4 children can be present in the home to receive licensed home-based education and care, as defined in section 309 of the Education Act. This maintains the current licensing requirements.
  • An educator’s child under the age of 6 will be counted as part of the maximum children allowed to receive home-based education and care.
  • An educator’s child who is enrolled in school will not be counted as part of the maximum under 13 years.
  • Only the children using the service for ECE will be funded through the ECE funding subsidy.

Home-based services will be expected to show they can maintain standards for the younger children’s safety, wellbeing and learning. The Ministry of Education will continue to monitor home based services and will intervene if the safety, wellbeing or learning of the children is being compromised.

Each home based ECE service will need to decide whether they want to offer the additional service under their licence.

Why the change?

The amendment will give families more choice for out of school care for their school aged children, potentially allowing greater participation in the workforce.

The amendment will also support the maintenance of standards of care for children aged 0-6 by bringing the unregulated activity of simultaneous care into the Ministry of Education’s oversight.

Considerations for early childhood education services

Each licensed home based ECE service will need to decide whether they want to offer out of school care at the same time that they offer ECE, under their current licence.

Home based services that choose to offer the additional service will be expected to show they can maintain standards for the younger children’s safety, wellbeing and learning. The Ministry of Education will continue to monitor home-based services and will intervene if the safety, wellbeing or learning of the children is being compromised.

 

 

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