13 December 2023

ACECQA’s 2023 Annual Performance Report Shows Ongoing Improvement

The Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) has released its 7th Annual Performance Report on the National Quality Framework (NQF). 

ACECQA’s  Annual Performance Reports track the continuous year-on-year improvements in service quality across the whole of the early childhood education and care (ECEC) sector since the NQF was established in 2012. You can find out more background about the Report here.

This year’s report shows continuous improvement across all seven quality areas of the National Quality Standard (NQS). Findings most relevant to the family day care sector include:

  • Of the 7,200 service providers who are approved to operate the 17,300 ECEC services across Australia, 448  are family day care services (3%). This represents a 10% decrease in the number of approved family day care services in Q2 2022.
  • ‘Private for profit’ providers operate more than two-thirds (69%) of long day care services, 63% of family day care services and more than half (52%) of outside school hours care services, but only 1% of preschools/kindergartens
  • As at 30 June 2023, 66% of family day care services are rated Meeting NQS or above, up from 44% as at 30 June 2018. The proportion of family day care services rated Meeting NQS or above is the highest since quality ratings first began, with recent year-on-year improvement rates of between 4-5 percentage points. If this trend continues, approaching 90% of family day care services will be rated Meeting NQS or above before the end of 2025.
  • 72% of family day care services are rated Meeting NQS or above for educational program and practice – the highest proportion to date.
  • Of all 15 standards of the NQS, assessment and planning (Standard 1.3) remains the most challenging across the entire ECEC sector, with the two most challenging elements of quality within it:

    o   Assessment and planning cycle (Element 1.3.1)
    o   Critical reflection (Element 1.3.2).
  • With regard to performance against Children’s Health and Safety (NQS 2), over three quarters of family day care services(78%) are rated Meeting NQS or above – the highest proportion in the sector to date.
  • 95% of family day care services are rated Meeting NQS or above for staffing arrangements – the highest proportion to date
  • Cost/affordability was the most important factor for survey respondents using family day care services, followed by a high quality early learning program and highly skilled educators, the latter two of which were ranked most highly by survey respondents using preschool/ kindergarten services
  • 46% of approved services had one or more confirmed breaches in 2022/23, with long day care (55%) and family day care (53%) services continuing to have the highest proportions
  • The two sections of the National Law continue to be the most frequently breached are:

    o   The approved provider, nominated supervisor and family day care educator must ensure that every reasonable precaution is taken to protect children from any harm and any hazard likely to cause injury (Section 167)
    o   The approved provider, nominated supervisor and family day care educator must ensure all children being educated and cared for by the service are adequately supervised at all times (Section 165).

You can download the whole 2023 Annual Performance Report here.

Additional related information resources, such as a report summary, interactive report charts and a slide deck for use by services are available here.

FDCA Learning Hub: New Module Released - Beyond the Rainbow: Making a Difference for All Families

We are pleased to advise members that a new module has been made available on the FDCA Learning Hub, Beyond the rainbow: Making a difference for all families.

This new module is one of more than 46 professional learning modules that you can access as part of your FDCA membership at no extra cost via the FDCA Learning Hub.

In this new module, you will learn about the diversity of families, LGBTQ+ parented families specifically and how diversity is a positive part of Australian society. You will learn how to create learning opportunities for birth to eight-year-olds that enable children to explore family diversity in an education and care setting.

In this module you will:

  • Have increased awareness that all families are different and all families need to be supported.
  • Have increased awareness of factors that contribute to discrimination against and disadvantage of children and families.
  • Have the ability to develop, create and sustain environments that are inclusive to all families.
  • Learn how to create learning opportunities for children to learn about family diversity.

Available through your Member Zone, and backed by one of Australia’s most respected early childhood professional development and advocacy organisations, Early Childhood Australia, the FDCA Learning Hub offers members contemporary and meaningful professional development opportunities that can be completed from the comfort of home, at a time that suits you.

To access this new module via your FDCA Member Zone, click here.

Recruitment for Family Day Care - Recording Available in Your Member Zone

Did you miss last week's Online Engage Series episode on Recruitment for Family Day Care?

In this episode of the FDCA Online Engagement Series our panel of guests examine the topic of recruitment in family day care. The panel covers topics such as the applicant experience, talent pooling, the recruitment process and proactive recruitment techniques.

FDCA Advocacy and Engagement Manager Michael Farrell was joined by Senior Policy Officer, Janet Callus from the Department for Education in South Australia, National Recruitment Manager, Damon Somerfield from FDCA and Recruitment Officer, Peta Fitzpatrick, from Enhance Family Day Care in Queensland.

FDCA members can access the episode at any time via the FDCA Member Zone in the Video Resources section.

FDCA Holiday Closure Information

The FDCA national office will be closed from Friday 22nd of December 2023 and will reopen at 9.00am AEDT on Tuesday the 2nd of January 2024.

Should your family day care insurance require renewal during this period or if you need to purchase a new family day care insurance policy, please visit our website. If you need to make an emergency claim details of how to do this are located on our website.

Otherwise please call our office on Tuesday the 2nd of January. We wish all our members a safe and relaxing holiday season!

Reminder from the Department: Update Your Contact Details

The Department is reminding service providers to update their contact details in the Child Care Subsidy System. All persons with management or control (PMCs) must also ensure their contact details are up to date. 

If the information in the system is not up to date, the Department cannot:

  • communicate essential information to services
  • contact you in an emergency
  • families may not get their CCS payments

The Department may also issue an infringement if you have not updated your details. You can update your details through the Provider Entry Point (PEP) or your third-party software.

Child Care Subsidy and the Christmas-New Year Period

Have you checked out the Department’s information about the 2023–24 Christmas–New Year period?

You can access all the information you need about Child Care Subsidy (CCS) payments, session reports, absences and service closures over the holiday period, including a helpful table of dates when services can submit session reports and claim absences during the 2023–24 Christmas–New Year break.