Licensing criteria for home-based ECE services
The Education Act 1989 S309 defines home-based ECE services as the provision of education or care, for gain or reward, to fewer than 5 children under the age of 6 (in addition to any child enrolled at school who is the child of the person who provides education or care) in:
- their own homes
- the home of the person providing education or care
- any other home nominated by the parents of the children.
These services are licensed in accordance with the Education Act 1989 under the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008, which prescribe minimum standards that each licensed service must meet. Licensing criteria are used to assess how the services meet the minimum standards required by the regulations.
The licensing criteria were last updated in November 2016.
A copy of the licensing criteria can be downloaded from the right-hand column below.
For each criterion there is guidance to help services meet the required standards.
Licensing Criteria Cover
HS31 Use of alcohol and other drugs by other people at the home
Health and Safety practices criterion 31
All practicable steps are taken to ensure that children do not come into contact with any person on the premises who is under the influence of alcohol or any other substance that has a detrimental effect on their functioning or behaviour.
The criterion aims to uphold the safety and wellbeing of children by ensuring children attending the service are not exposed to the risks of persons under the influence of alcohol or other harmful substances.
Any examples in the guidance are provided as a starting point to show how services can meet (or exceed) the requirement. Services may choose to use other approaches better suited to their needs as long as they comply with the criteria.
It is important for service providers and educators to have considered in advance the types of situations that might occur in a home-based service and how these would be best handled. This would be an appropriate discussion during an induction process and could include:
- What would the educator do if a parent or caregiver arrived to drop off or collect a child and they were under the influence of alcohol or any other substance?
- What to do if the educator is working in the home of the child and an adult present at the premises consumes alcohol in the presence of the educator and/or child.