Education Ministers have now released the outcomes of the 2019 National Quality Framework (NQF) Review, with changes to deliver benefits to education and care providers, educators, children and their families.
Decision Regulation Impact Statement (DRIS) for the 2019 NQF Review is available on the 2019 NQF Review website and includes details of the changes to the NQF and why they are being recommended.
The 2019 NQF Review was a 3-year evaluation to help ensure the regulatory framework remains current, relevant and continues to meet its objectives.
The 2019 NQF Review recommendations included a number of changes to the National Law and National Regulations, in addition to the development of further national guidance, resources and communications to provide greater clarity and improve awareness.
Key recommended changes for Queensland include:
- New requirements to ensure children’s safety during transportation, including requiring the presence of a staff member of an Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) service (other than the driver) when children are embarking and disembarking from the vehicle at the service, and the development of additional guidance in relation to adequate supervision and risk assessments.
- Improving safety of children during the transition period between services (e.g. between schools and outside school hours care) by requiring, where relevant, services to have a specific policy and procedure for this period.
- New requirements to ensure children’s safety during emergency evacuations from services located in multi-storey buildings.
- Additional measures to improve safety and oversight of children attending family day care (FDC) services by:
- Removing the ‘actively working towards’ provision for FDC educators and mandating FDC educators hold an approved Certificate III early childhood qualification prior to providing education and care (as recommended by the Queensland Coroner in 2019).
- Improving safety around swimming pools by introducing additional safeguards in FDC residences and ensuring all FDC residences comply with a 0.75 metre safety glass height requirement.
- Additional measures to improve safe sleep and rest practices in ECEC services including introducing requirements for risk assessments.
- Responding to recommendations from the Royal Commission to address gaps between the NQF and the National Child Safe Principles.
- Introducing a 3-year phased-in approach to increase certain nationally prescribed fees charged by Regulatory Authorities (not increased since 2012), with the fee increase limited to an overall increase of 25%.
The majority of changes recommended from the 2019 NQF Review involve updating the National Law and Regulations so that regulatory changes can commence from mid-2023.
With a number of recent incidents involving serious harm to children left on service vehicles (including buses), new regulatory requirements for services around regular transportation are expected to come into effect from early 2023. This emphasises the critical importance of ensuring children’s safety during transportation.
For more information and to view the DRIS, visit the
NQF Review website.