Licensing criteria for home-based ECE services

Section 10 of the Education and Training Act 2020 defines home-based ECE services as the provision of education or care, for gain or reward, to fewer than 5 children under the age of 6 (in addition to any child enrolled at school who is the child of the person who provides education or care) in:

  1. their own homes
  2. the home of the person providing education or care
  3. any other home nominated by the parents of the children.

These services are licensed in accordance with the Education and Training Act 2020 under the Education (Early Childhood Services) Regulations 2008, 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, 541 KB] and printed.

The licensing criteria were last updated in November 2016.

Licensing Criteria Cover

PF17 Nappy change facilities

  • Criteria
    • Criteria

      Premises and Facilities criterion 17

      Where children wearing nappies attend, there are safe and hygienic nappy changing facilities.


      To ensure that appropriate facilities are available for children wearing nappies.

  • 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.


      All surfaces on and around the change area must be smooth, impervious and able to be easily wiped cleaned and disinfected (a towel does not meet this criterion). Any change mat or pad must have a non-porous covering or be disposed of after each child is changed.


      Nappy change facilities should be located in an area of the home that is separate from food preparation or eating areas.

      Design, strength and durability

      If using a change table:

      • check its strength to ensure it is sturdy enough to cope with the weight of the children using it
      • use the strap to ensure the child doesn’t roll off, or always keep one hand on the child at all times.

      For older, heavier children, a change mat on the floor may be more appropriate than a changing table.

      Children’s independence and dignity

      Educators need to ensure the facilities foster children’s independence as appropriate and protect children’s dignity and right to privacy.

      Health and safety of educators

      Some change facilities require educators to engage in excessive heavy lifting, hunching over, or kneeling. This may result in sprains or strains so educators need to be mindful of how to manage this.