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.
For each criterion there is guidance to help services meet the required standards.
The publication of the criteria on its own can be downloaded as a PDF [PDF, 541 KB] and printed.
The licensing criteria were last updated in November 2016.
Licensing Criteria Cover
PF1 Design and layout of premises
Premises and Facilities criterion 1
The design and layout of the premises:
- support the provision of different types of indoor and outdoor experiences; and
- include quiet spaces, areas for physically active play, and space for a range of individual and group learning experiences appropriate to the number, ages, and abilities of children attending.
To ensure children have access to an environment that can support a range of activities for children of all ages and strikes a balance between physically active play and quiet spaces.
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.
All homes will be designed differently but most will have lounge or living space that can be used for a variety of activities, including where children are able to find a place for quiet activities as necessary. An area without carpet can be used for more messy activities, such as painting or clay modelling, or a coversheet can be laid down to protect flooring as necessary so that children have the ability to experience different creative activities.
Homes must have sufficient indoor space for group learning and homes also need to have some outdoor space to allow for physical activity. For the indoor and outdoor space requirements, see the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008.
If providing out-of-school care, the educator should ensure they can see and hear the children at all times. Small spaces should be kept clear of clutter and larger spaces are set up so children have clear play spaces that educators can observe.
For the indoor and outdoor space requirements, see the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008.