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.

Premises and facilities

20 Premises and facilities standard

(1) The premises and facilities standard requires the service provider for every certificated playgroup to operate from premises that are:

  • safe and that provide sufficient space, facilities, and equipment to support the learning of children attending the playgroup and maintain their health and well-being; and
  • available for use by other groups in the community; but
  • not used as a private dwelling.

(2) Subclause

  • does not prevent a playgroup from operating from a part of any premises set aside for the exclusive use of the playgroup, (for example, a particular room in a building) if another part or parts of the same premises are open to use by other groups in the community.

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