Certification criteria for playgroups

Section 10 of the Education and Training Act 2020(external link) defines a playgroup as a group that meets on a regular basis to facilitate children's play and in respect of which—

  1. no child attends for more than 4 hours on any day; and
  2. more than half the children attending on any occasion have a parent or caregiver present in the same play area at the same time; and
  3. the total number of children attending on any occasion is not greater than 4 times the number of parents and caregivers present in the same play area at the same time.

Playgroups include Puna Kōhungahunga, cultural playgroups and community language playgroups.

Playgroups are certificated in accordance with the Education and Training Act 2020 under the Education (Playgroups) Regulations 2008(external link), which prescribe minimum standards that each certificated playgroup must meet. Certification criteria are used to assess how playgroups meet the minimum standards required by the regulations.

For each criterion there is guidance to help playgroups meet the required standards.

The publication of the criteria on its own can be downloaded as a PDF [PDF, 1.1 MB] and printed.

The certification criteria were last updated in September 2022.

MA5 Enrolment records

  • Criteria
    • Criteria

      Governance Management & Administration criterion 5

      Enrolment and attendance records are maintained for children attending.

      Documentation required:

      1. Enrolment records, showing at least:

      • child’s name, gender and date of birth
      • parent’s home address and phone number
      • emergency contact phone number
      • ethnicity (including iwi affiliations as appropriate).

      2. Attendance records, showing at least the child’s full name and days attended.


      Well maintained enrolment and attendance records provide evidence for community and Crown funding.

      They are also an indicator of good management and administration practices necessary to ensure the safety of the children attending.


  • Guidance
    • Guidance

      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.

      Your playgroup will need to develop a system to make sure enrolment and attendance records are maintained and reviewed.

      Attendance records must be marked daily for safety reasons and in order to keep accurate records for funding claims.

      It would be useful to develop a practice of reviewing enrolment and attendance records regularly and filing enrolment records of children who have left or have not attended for a considerable period of time.

      Doing this every few months can help identify who is still part of the group. Your group may want to develop this as part of a roster system. For example every second month you could check enrolment records against roll books. You may also want to phone parents and caregivers who are longer attending to enable you to maintain accurate records.

      Below are some examples of an enrolment form and attendance record. The examples include mandatory requirement. You could consider adding information, changing the layout, wording, titles etc to suit your own playgroup.

      The Ministry of Education collects information annually from all playgroups about hours of operation, and age, ethnicity and gender of children attending. This annual statistics form (RS61PG) is sent out to playgroups in June each year. Accurate enrolment and attendance records will make it easier to complete this form.