The Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) has released its 27th NQF Snapshot report, summarising quality rating results for education and care services operating under the National Quality Framework (NQF).
ACECQA announced approximately eight out of 10 (79%) children’s education and care services are rated Meeting NQS or above, with three out of 10 (30%) rated Exceeding NQS.
“The Education and Care Services National Law and Regulations govern the minimum standards and requirements that all providers of regulated services must meet in order to operate. The National Quality Standard is then used by state and territory regulatory authorities to assess and rate services,” said ACECQA CEO Gabrielle Sinclair.
To be rated Meeting NQS, all elements across each of the seven quality areas must be met. This means that a service may be rated Working Towards NQS based on not meeting a single element or not meeting all elements. Roughly a third of services are rated Working Towards NQS based on not meeting three or fewer elements of quality. As detailed in the NQF Snapshot, a rating of Working Towards NQS indicates that a service provides a safe education and care program, but there are one or more areas identified for improvement.
A revised, streamlined version of the NQS, which also introduced a new approach to calculating the Exceeding NQS rating, commenced on 1 February 2018. Since then, more than a third of services have been assessed against the challenging bar set by the 2018 NQS.
Ms Sinclair added, “An objective of the National Quality Framework is to promote continuous quality improvement. With more than 9000 reassessments undertaken, there is increasingly strong evidence that the sector has embraced and embodied this objective. Around two thirds of services rated Working Towards NQS improve their quality rating following a reassessment. Furthermore, the proportion of services rated Meeting NQS or above has increased each and every year.”
Snapshot highlights include:
- 15,919 NQF approved education and care services across Australia
- 94% (14,975) services have received a quality rating
- 79% (11,851) of all quality rated services have an overall quality rating of Meeting NQS or above
- 48 Excellent rated services
- 36% (5704) services with a quality rating against the 2018 NQS.