1. The person responsible for staff must hold an ECE qualification recognised for teacher registration. (Note that this must be an ECE qualification, such as a diploma or degree to Level 7 or equivalent. The qualification held by a ‘person responsible’ cannot be a primary or secondary teaching qualification).
2. Kindergartens, childcare and other centres led by teachers must have at least 50% of staff (including person responsible) with a recognised qualification at all times. (Note that the qualification requirement for staff other than the person responsible can include a primary teacher qualification).
The Ministry of Education requires that centres hold evidence that they are meeting the 50% requirement. This includes:
- the qualification documents that show teachers are qualified (or comparable to a NZ initial teacher education qualification as assessed by NZQA)
- rosters that show when qualified teachers work
- documents that show there is a working relationship, e.g. employment agreements or letters of appointment
- a completed Verification of Final Year of Study form for up to one person in their final year of study permitted to be counted within the 50% requirement:
- a completed early childhood education Qualified Teachers Attestation form if part-time teachers are employed and are working in two or more licensed early childhood education services
3. One member of staff can be counted as holding a recognised qualification if enrolled in a course of study that may result in being awarded a recognised qualification within 12 months (i.e. in their last final year of study).
4. Full names and qualifications of each person counting towards qualification requirements are prominently displayed for parents and visitors.
Additional Information in Respect to Playcentres. Playcentres affiliated to the New Zealand Playcentre Association operate under a funding agreement with the Ministry of Education that specifies three different options for assessing if a Playcentre has met the qualification requirement. The options include recognised teacher qualifications, Playcentre diploma certificates, and number of parents enrolled in Playcentre training.
Additional Information in Respect to Kōhanga Reo. The funding agreement between Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust Board and the Ministry of Education for individual Kōhanga Reo allows the qualification recognised by the Trust to be the qualification that is recognised. The qualification is called Tino Rangatiratanga Whakapakari Tohu. At least one adult is required to hold the qualification, or be in their final year of training and working with a second adult who holds attestation as a recognised native speaker, or one adult in the final year of training plus one in four families undertaking training in Te Ara Tuatahi or Te Ara Tuarua to support the acquisition and use of te reo Māori by whānau in the home and in the Kōhanga Reo.
5. The number of qualified staff within the minimum adult-to-child ratio must be kept at all times. This includes when the service takes children on an excursion, when adults go on lunch, when adults take other entitled breaks, and when they have non-contact time. An adult does not count toward the number of qualified staff when working in the kitchen, office or other areas when not supervising and working with children.