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.

ECE Funding Handbook downloads

3-B Teacher-led services

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Teacher-led services mean services that require the person responsible to be a qualified, certificated teacher.

Teacher-led services include:

  • early childhood education and care centres, including kindergartens
  • hospital-based education and care services
  • home-based education and care services.

In hospital-based and home-based services, the person responsible must hold an ECE teaching qualification. In early childhood education and care centres, including kindergartens, the person responsible may be primary or ECE qualified.

Teacher-led services exclude parent-led services. For definitions of these service types, please see the Glossary of this Handbook.

Education and care services

Education and care teacher-led services are required to meet teacher certification requirements.

Funding for each education and care service depends on:

  • the service type (centre-based, hospital-based or home-based)
  • whether a service is all-day or sessional
  • the proportion of regulated (ratio) staff hours that are covered by certificated teachers (see Section 3-B-2 for further information)
  • the age of children attending the service
  • whether the service is offering 20 Hours ECE.

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