The delivery of playgroups throughout Australia has been an integral part of the landscape of early childhood programs for many decades; however, despite the prominence of playgroups in the lives of many Australian families, there is no one established set of principles guiding the practice and delivery of high-quality playgroups nationally (Commerford & Robinson, 2016). This is in part due to differing guidelines and funding models across Australian states and territories, and varying models of implementation within and between organisations running playgroups.
The following set of fundamental playgroup principles have been developed to:
- be a starting point for a more consistent understanding and discourse around playgroups;
- to guide consistent, high quality practice; and,
- to enable a consistent set of core outcomes to be identified that can be evaluated across jurisdictions, organisations and playgroup types, which in turn will build the evidence base for the effectiveness of playgroups.