Working in family day care

​​​​​​​​​​‘In terms of family day care set up [in your home], less is more. Children are very creative and resilient, they don’t need lots of cool toys to engage in learning. You can easily select items you already have at home and add it into your play spaces.’ – Vivian

Family day care services operate in the private homes of registered educators as part of an approved family day care scheme. Educators are supported by family day care coordinators employed by the scheme.

Family day care educates and cares for up to 4 children from birth to pre-school age. Hours are flexible and before and after care for up to 3 additional school-aged children can also be provided.

Family day care offers a safe education and care option for children, traditionally in a home or family learning environment. It can be:

  • all day
  • on a part-time basis
  • in the evening
  • overnight
  • before and after school
  • during school holidays.

These services can offer education and care to children with parents who work outside centre-based normal hours. They must employ staff who hold or are studying an approved qualification in order to comply with the National Quality Framework.

Family day care roles and qualifications

There are many family day care providers across Queensland. Thousands of people work in family day care settings with different qualifications and in a range of roles.

Family day care educator

A family day care (FDC) educator provides individualised education and care to small groups of children (no more than 4 children under school age) in their own homes. An additional 3 school-aged children may attend the family day care outside of school hours.

Since 1 July 2023, new FDC educators must hold an approved certificate III​ level (or higher) qualification prior to commencing their role in an FDC service and cannot be ‘actively working towards’ a qualification. 

However, transitional arrangements mean that existing educators have until 1 July 2024 to complete an approved qualification.

To be considered an existing educator, the educator must:

  • have been engaged with a FDC scheme on 30 June 2023
  • been actively working towards an approved qualification on 30 June 2023.

If an FDC educator meets these criteria, they can be employed with any scheme during this transitional year, and do not have to maintain employment with the same scheme.

Learn more on the NQF Review website​.

Family day care coordinator

A family day care coordinator manages the standard of education and care by monitoring, supporting and developing educators. They assist educators to design, plan, implement and evaluate their educational programs.

All family day care coordinators must hold an approved diploma level education and care qualification. In Queensland, you are taken to hold an approved diploma level education and care qualification if you held a qualification before 1 January 2012 that is published on the list of Former approved qualifications for Family Day Care Coordinators (in Queensland).

Note: All new service approvals for family day care services issued after October 2017 require a minimum ratio of 1 coordinator for every 15 educators for the first 12 months of service operation.

In Home Care

In Home Care is a unique early childhood education and care service. When mainstream early childhood services are not available or not suitable for a child, a qualified early childhood In Home Care teacher or educator can provide an individualised play-based program in the safety and comfort of the family’s own home.

Some examples of In Home Care include the teacher or educator providing an education and care program for a child:

  • who is immunocompromised and therefore vulnerable to illness in a group setting
  • living in the outback, so no early childhood services are available near the family’s remote location (live with the family in this instance)
  • whose parents or carers work non-standard hours when other approved early childhood services are closed.

For more information on In Home Care contact 1800 993 737 or visit In Home Child Care Agency and Provider in Queensland.

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Last updated 28 August 2023