Out of School Hours Care

Out of School Hours Care (OSHC) services are approved to operate under the Education and Care Services National Law Act 2010, the Education and Care Services National Regulations and the National Quality Framework (NQF). OSHC services offer an educational program and practice delivered in accordance with My Time Our Place, the framework for school age care in Australia. Schools may be approved to operate their own OSHC or may arrange for an external approved provider to operate an OSHC service at the school.

ACECQA, the National Quality Framework and the NSW Regulator

The Australian Children's Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) oversees the national implementation of the National Quality Framework (NQF), which is the application of the National Law and Regulations covering OSHC services (along with other approved ECEC services).

In NSW, the regulator for OSHC services is the Department of Education's Early Childhood Education Directorate (ECED). In order to operate an OSHC service approved under the NQF, several regulatory approvals are required, including Provider Approval and Service Approval. The ECED only accepts online applications for approvals and notifications which are submitted through ACECQA’s National Quality Agenda IT System (NQAITS).

All OSHC services should ensure they are up to date with the latest requirements of the NQF. These include a new educator to child ratio of 1:15 applying to OSHC services in NSW. OSHC services must also maintain evidence about the development of the learning program rather than documenting evaluations of individual children’s wellbeing, learning and development.

National Quality Standard

As a requirement of the NQF, all approved OSHC services are assessed against the National Quality Standard and given a rating against seven quality areas, plus an overall rating. Ratings are published to provide parents and the community more information about individual services.

The seven areas for assessment are:

  1. Educational program and practice
  2. Children's health and safety
  3. Physical environment
  4. Staffing arrangements (including the number of staff looking after children)
  5. Relationships with children
  6. Collaborative partnerships with families and communities
  7. Governance and Leadership

Further information about requirements for these areas is available through the ACECQA website.

Relevant Documents

Relevant Links