ECE Funding Handbook
Welcome to the Early Childhood Funding Handbook. This Funding Handbook is issued under section 548(5) of the Education and Training Act 2020(external link). The funding paid to licensed services is paid subject to the terms and conditions set out under this Handbook and must be complied with. The terms used in this Handbook are based in the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008.
This Handbook is designed to be a ‘one-stop-shop’ for all you need to know about early childhood funding, including:
- the Early Childhood Education (ECE) Funding Subsidy
- 20 Hours Early Childhood Education (ECE)
- Equity Funding
- the Annual Top-Up for Isolated Services
Note: The information in the Funding Handbook does not apply to certificated playgroups. These services should contact their Ministry regional office for further information.
Downloading the ECE Funding Handbook
If you want a printed copy of this handbook, refer to the list of downloads in the contents section where you will find downloadable PDF versions of each chapter.
2-1 The link between licensing and funding
There are legal requirements that must be met to operate any premises as an early childhood service.
Licences are issued to early childhood education services under the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008(external link).
Licences set the standards for curriculum, premises and facilities, health and safety, and governance and management of early childhood services.
Certificated Playgroup funding is not covered in this Handbook.
Playgroups do not receive the same level of funding as licensed ECE services.
- Certificates are issued to Playgroups under the Education (Playgroups) Regulations 2008(external link).
- Certificates set the standard for curriculum, ratio, premises and facilities, health and safety practices and administration.
- Funding information and requirements for Playgroups can be found under Playgroup Funding on the Ministry’s early childhood education website.
Contact your Ministry regional office for further information.
Support for licensing
The Ministry can provide information to help groups set up early childhood education (ECE) services.
Steps for setting up services, useful website links, and other handy resources are available to all groups on the Ministry website. For information about the Early Learning Information System (ELI) or the electronic submission of RS7 returns, please visit eli.education.govt.nz(external link) or contact your Ministry regional office for further details.
How to find legal information
Use the table below to see where you can find copies of the documents referred to in this section.
Document Where to look Education and Training Act 2020(external link) (especially sections 10(external link), 20(external link), 548(external link), 549(external link), 626(external link))
www.legislation.govt.nz(external link) or any bookstore that sells government publications.
Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008(external link) Education (Registration of Early Childhood Services Teachers) Regulations 2004(external link)