First aid qualifications for ECE services and kōhanga reo
You must provide a safe learning environment by ensuring that your staff have first-aid knowledge.
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Early learning services have a statutory requirement to have first aid qualified staff, as is stated in the Education and Training Act 2020.
- HS22 condition clause
- What is a first aid qualification?
- Get the right first aid qualification
- Training providers
- Keeping your qualification current
- Qualification reviews
- Further information and resources
Early childhood education (ECE) centres and kōhanga reo must have one first aid qualified person present for every 50 children attending, at all times. For home-based services, a first aid qualified adult must be present at all times while children are attending.
The licensing criteria for first-aid qualifications are below:
- Centre-based services - HS25 First aid qualifications
- Home-based services - HS22 First aid qualifications
- Te Kōhanga Reo - HS25 First aid qualifications.
The HS22 condition clause is for home-based services where a new educator’s access to first aid training is limited due to circumstances beyond the service provider’s control.
In such cases, service providers must ensure that their educators:
- have knowledge of first aid
- gain a first aid qualification within four months of starting work at the service.
When the HS22 condition clause is evoked, staff must still gain a first aid qualification within four months of starting work at the service.
Read further operational guidelines about when this condition applies and how to assess an educator's first aid knowledge.
This allowance is to meet the requirements of Regulation 46(1)(a) in the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008(external link).
To be recognised as a qualified first aider, an adult must meet one of the following requirements:
- Have a current New Zealand Qualifications Authority - (NZQA) approved first aid qualification.
- Be a registered medical practitioner or nurse with a current practising certificate.
- Be a qualified ambulance officer or paramedic.
If a child is injured, any required first aid must be administered or supervised by an adult meeting these qualification requirements.
First aid qualifications must:
- be delivered by an organisation granted consent by the (NZQA) to assess first aid unit standards
- cover the outcomes of specific standards set by The Skills Organisation(external link)
- meet the The Skills Organisation's requirements in First Aid as a Life Skill – Training Requirements for Quality Provision of Unit Standard-based First Aid Training(external link)
- have a certificate issued by an NZQA approved first aid provider that is valid for two years
- complete a refresher course every two years to maintain the certificate as current.
There are a number of unit standards available that provide a first aid qualification to meet our requirements. These are:
For centre-based services and kōhanga reo:
- 6401 – Provide first aid, and
- 6402 – Provide resuscitation level 2.
For home-based services:
- 25459 - Provide first aid for young children.
Core health unit standards 6401 and 6402 (detailed above for centre-based services and kōhanga reo) may also be considered for home-based services, however note that they cover first aid for children and adults.
We also recommend that staff complete unit 6400, which will teach staff how to manage first aid in emergency situations.
View first aid training providers with consent to assess unit standards 6401, 6402, 6400, and 25459 on the First Aid page of the NZQA website.(external link)
Training providers must report completed first aid qualifications to the NZQA so that they can added to a person's Record of Achievement.
To keep first aid qualifications current, staff will need to attend a refresher course with a registered first aid provider.
The first aid unit standards are currently under review by the standard setting body, the Skills Organisation.
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