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, 1.4 MB] and printed.
The licensing criteria were last updated in January 2021.
PF14 Isolation area
Premises and Facilities criterion 14
There is space (away from where food is stored, prepared, or eaten) where a sick child can:
- be temporarily kept at a safe distance from other children (to prevent cross-infection);
- lie down comfortably; and
- be supervised.
The criterion aims to uphold the safety and well-being of all children attending by ensuring that there is a comfortable and safe place available for the isolation of a sick child.
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.
When a child becomes unexpectedly ill attending the home-based service, there needs to be somewhere for their care to make the sick child feel comfortable, as well as to keep other children from becoming ill until the sick child or other children at the home can be collected and taken home. The child must be able to be supervised. If the child is isolated in a separate room the educator should carry out regular checks every 10 to 15 minutes, as they would do with a sleeping child.
In a home-based setting, it is likely that there would be more than one different place that could meet this requirement (bedroom, study, family room, etc). Deciding on the best place to use in each situation will depend on:
- the number and ages of other children attending
- the physical layout of the home (and related supervision issues)
- the symptoms of the illness
- how the child is feeling and responding to becoming ill.