The Parents’ Choice Awards

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Parents’ Choice Awards – “Celebrating the best ECE services for young children and their families”

What is the Award and Eligibility

This is an annual award to recognise high-quality early childhood services. 

The award is open to all early childhood services of any type and description, providing the service has held a full licence for at least 12 months. 

  • Is the quality and difference your service makes such that families want to shout from the roof-tops and tell everyone?
  • Does your team deserve to have their skills, caring, and hard work acknowledged publicly by winning this award?
  • Does your service meet Ministry of Education expectations for compliance with regulations, and strive to provide better? 

Going for a Parents’ Choice Award is a great way for your service to raise its profile in the sector and get community and public support.

Winners will receive a badge that may be displayed on their website, front door, newsletters etc. 

My ECE will publish an article about each winner, introducing their service and highlighting why it’s a service of choice for parents.

Service providers can make a self-nomination at any time and applications close one month following the end of the year for which the award will cover (e.g., for the Parents Choice Award 2022 nominations close on 31 Jan 2023).  Please make sure your service has met the criteria for an Award before contacting us for an application form.   

Criteria for the Parents’ Choice Awards 

CriteriaHow measured 
1. The service has fulfilled Ministry of Education expectations for compliance with regulatory standardsNo licensing action has been taken against the service, under current or past owners/managers, within the last 3 years (36 months)You will be asked to attest to this on the award application form. My ECE reserves the right to check with the Ministry.
2. 80% or more families surveyed recommend the serviceAs shown in the results of your service’s OECE parent survey.  Results are valid for 2 years (24 months) from the date of the survey reportIf your service hasn’t recently undertaken a parent survey, do it now – here’s the link.
You will be asked to attest that 80% or more families surveyed recommend your service, on the application form for this award. My ECE reserves the right to check with the OECE.
3. Parents and caregivers have publicly given many positive reviews and rated the service highly.The number of positive reviews and 5-star overall ratings achieved during the year (over 12 months) on the service’s listing in the My ECE national register.  
At least 6 positive reviews for services licensed for less than 70 children. At least 12 positive reviews for services licensed for 70 or more children.
It may help to share the National Register link to your service with parents and caregivers and ask them if they would like to post a review.  
4. The service abides by the Code of Ethical Conduct for Early Childhood ServicesThe service’s licensing history, parent survey results, and publicly posted reviews on My ECE, provide no red flags to suggest the service has a problem abiding by the Code of Ethical Conduct.You will be asked to attest to abiding by the Code on the award application form, and that your service displays a copy of the Code, and/or all staff are familiar with it.

The criteria for the Parents’ Choice Award take cognisance of the following approaches to quality as outlined by Alexander (1999) in a paper titled: “Research and the Production of “Worthwhile” Knowledge about “Quality” in Early Years Education” 

  • Client perspectives and benefits
  • Organisational approach – ownership by services of their individual quality
  • Regulatory (a baseline measure)


More than one award may be made in any year. 

No Parents’ Choice Awards will be made if no service satisfactorily meets criteria.

My ECE reserves the right to withdraw a service’s Parents’ Choice Award at any time after it has been given, should it come to My ECE’s attention that the service or its representatives mislead, falsified, or did not disclose relevant information, or a subsequent event brings into question the goodness or safety of the service for children, or the service provider is convicted of a crime receiving a jail sentence or substantial fine (e.g., successful prosecution by WorkSafe).   

2022 Parent Choice Award Winners

A Parents’ Choice 2022 Award goes to …. (to be announced in early 2023)


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Join the Parents Council

Are you are parent, grandparent, or caregiver of a child under 6 years?    

Join the ECE Parents Council.   You will receive:

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