Licensing criteria for home-based ECE services

Section 10 of the Education and Training Act 2020(external link) defines home-based ECE services as the provision of education or care, for gain or reward, to children who are under the age of 5 years, or who are aged 5 years but not enrolled at school, in:

  • the children’s own home; or
  • the home of the person providing the education or care; or
  • any other home nominated by a parent of the children.

These services are licensed in accordance with the Education and Training Act 2020 under the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008(external link), which prescribe minimum standards that each licensed service must meet. Licensing criteria are used to assess how the services meet the minimum standards required by the regulations.

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

The publication of the criteria on its own can be downloaded as a PDF [PDF, 1.3 MB] and printed.

The licensing criteria were last updated in September 2022.

GMA6 Human resource management

  • Criteria
    • Criteria

      Governance Management and Administration criterion 6

      Suitable human resource management practices are implemented for educators and staff.

      Documentation required:

      Processes for human resource management. Processes at least include:

      • procedures for the selection and appointment of suitable educators and staff;
      • job/role descriptions;
      • training plans for educators with little or no previous experience in early childhood education;
      • induction procedures into the service;
      • a system of regular appraisal;
      • provision for professional development;
      • a definition of serious misconduct; and
      • discipline/dismissal procedures.

      The criterion informs the Ministry of Education about the management’s commitment and capability to implement human resource management practices that will recruit, manage and develop competent staff, as the ongoing quality of the staff engaging with and educating children is important in a quality service.

      Selection processes and the provision of training will help ensure educators with little or no experience working in home-based early childhood education environments are: suitable or fit to be an educator, able to develop the appropriate skills and receive ongoing professional development support from service providers.

      Amended May 2015


  • Guidance
    • Guidance

      The requirement to ensure that human resource management practices are implemented is underpinned by Regulation 47(1)(a) and 47(1)(e). These require service providers to ensure that the service is effectively governed, is managed in accordance with good management practices and all reasonable steps are taken to provide staff employed or engaged in the service with adequate professional support, professional development opportunities, and resources.

      The following examples are provided as a starting point to show how services can meet the requirement. Services may choose to use other approaches better suited to their needs as long as they comply with the criteria.

      Selection and Appointment Processes

      NZ Government website(external link) carries a range of resources and tools for employers covering recruiting, appointing and managing staff.

      Services should ensure that:

      • Job descriptions are regularly reviewed and reflect the philosophy and needs of the service. For certificated teachers, link to the Standards for the Teaching Profession | Ngā Paerewa(external link). The Ministry of Education provides further information on job descriptions.
      • Appointment policies and procedures are clear, reflect the requirements of current legislation, provide managers with useful guidance and are regularly reviewed.
      • Before confirming an appointment a safety check is undertaken in accordance with the Children’s Act 2014 (see also GMA6A). A police vet is also obtained for every person over 17 years of age who lives in the home where the service is being provided.
      • All staff employed or engaged in the service are provided with ongoing support and receive a documented orientation and induction into the service which outlines all policies and procedures.

      Professional Development and Appraisals (or Professional Growth Cycle)

      Services should ensure that:

      • Professional development for staff employed or engaged in the service is a priority, proactively supported and appropriately resourced.
      • Tōmua (Provisionally Certificated Teachers) are proactively supported to become fully certificated.
      • Philosophy, goals and professional development are clearly linked.
      • Professional development is closely aligned to individual appraisal goals or the professional growth cycle for certificated teachers.
      • A regular appraisal system or professional growth cycle is documented and is part of an annual cycle linked to professional development and includes provision for ongoing coaching or mentoring and self-reflection.
      • Staff employed or engaged in the service, in conjunction with the appraiser, identify specific and measurable goals, and progress towards achieving these is monitored through documented observations, conversations and ongoing feedback.
      • Professional development for certificated teachers (in all practising certificate categories Tōmua, Tūturu and Pūmau) is aligned with the Professional Growth Cycle for Teachers as required by the Teaching Council of Aotearoa New Zealand, Tātaiako(external link) and Tapasā(external link).

      Discipline/Dismissal Procedures

      The Employment New Zealand Website carries a range of resources and tools for employers covering Disciplinary Processes(external link) and Dismissal(external link).

      • Discipline and dismissal policies and procedures must be clear, reflect the requirements of current legislation and provide managers with useful guidance.
      • The Education and Training Act 2020 states that an employer must provide a mandatory report to the Teaching Council of Aotearoa New Zealand in certain circumstances. A Conduct and Competence Process Guide(external link) provides a comprehensive coverage of the process and requirements.

      Serious Misconduct

      The Education and Training Act 2020(external link) and the Teaching Council Rules 2016(external link) outline the criteria for reporting serious misconduct and may assist in defining serious misconduct in your service.

  • Things to consider