New Action plans to improvise early learning services holistically

Updated: Sep 16, 2021

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A compendious study and review on the early learning regulatory system have been launched by the Ministry of Education. Supporting to create high-quality educational outcomes for the young learners is the principal objective of refining the system. In order to ensure high priority issues are actioned first, the review process is planned to be completed in three tranches. This initiative is currently in the second trach review stage and the government has planned to discuss these changes with the public in the coming months to gather feedback to proceed for confirmation. [1]

The consultation begins on 8th September and runs until 13th October 2021. The Second Tranche of review to collect public opinion to improve the quality of early learning services for tamariki and whānau are about to begin in September. Online public hui sessions will be conducted on the below-mentioned dates.[2]

  • Tuesday 21 September 7 – 8pm:

To discuss Home-based proposals and regulatory changes

  • Wednesday 22 September 3 – 4:15 pm:

To discuss implementing the new network management function for early learning services

  • Thursday 23 September 7 – 8 pm:

To discuss regulating for 80% qualified teachers and strengthening the person responsible requirement for teacher-led centre-based services and hospital-based services

What are the proposed changes!

Proposals to implement the new network management function for early learning services

If one wants to operate on a new licensed early childhood service from 1 August 2022, they will need to get network management approval from the Ministry of Education before applying for licensing. Several proposals are set out to demonstrate how this function might work, which includes possible National and Regional Statements to set out where new services are needed, and options to fulfil the Crown’s Te Tiriti o Waitangi responsibilities and capability to deliver the service etc. [4]

Regulating for 80% qualified teachers

The current requirement of the system is to have 50% of the staffs to be ECE (Early Childhood Education ) qualified. The Government plans to set an objective to regulate for 80% qualified teachers in teacher-led centres before regulating for 100% in the long term. This is planned based on the principle that better-qualified teachers with professional competencies and skills can lead to better positive outcomes for children.

Strengthening the person responsible requirement for teacher-led centres and hospital-based services

  • Retaining a high percentage of ECE qualified teachers

  • Matching regulations with the funding rules and

  • Ensuring ECE qualified teachers are always present.

are the main options being considered.

The government is welcoming on proposals to ensure the person responsible role for teacher-led centres and hospital-based services remains clear, fit-for-purpose and safeguards children’s best interests.[5]

Strengthening the person responsible requirement for home-based services

Licenced home-based early childhood education (ECE) is delivered in private homes by educators working with one to four children. In licenced home-based services a qualified, registered and certificated ECE teacher, called the co-ordinator or ‘person responsible,’ visits homes to support these educators and supervise the education and care of the children.

Strengthen the role of the person responsible for home-based services is inevitable to create a better outcome. Government is consulting on proposals to strengthen key elements of the role, and align with related proposals from the 2018 Review of Home-based ECE. [6]

“The Ministry of Education believes that the proposed changes will help create a more fit for purpose, high quality and sustainable early learning network supported by well-qualified, diverse teaching staff and leaders. This is an important chance for all people interested in the care, education, and wellbeing of our tamariki in their early years, to have their say on the proposed changes,” John Brooker, Group Manager, Education System Policy, at the Ministry of Education says.


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