Go to top of page

December | 2019

In South Australia, there are three groups of early childhood services:

  1. education and care services that are in the scope of the National Quality Framework (which includes the Education and Care Services National Law (South Australia) (the National Law)
  2. ‘residual’ services that are regulated under a modified use of the National Law and service-specific regulations and standards
  3. out-of-scope’ services that are not regulated under either the National Quality Framework or the National Law.

Services 'in scope' of the National Quality Framework

Education and care services that are in scope of the National Quality Framework include:

  • preschools
  • out-of-school-hours care
  • family day care
  • long day care.

These services are regulated under the Education and Care Services National Law (South Australiaand the Education and Care Services National Regulations 2011 and are assessed and rated against the National Quality Standard.

Residual services

Residual services, which do not come under the National Quality Framework, include:

  • occasional care
  • rural and mobile care
  • in-home care
  • family day-care (sole educator) services.

These services are referred to in legislation as ‘residual early childhood services’. A modified version of the National Law and National Regulations apply to them. These services are not assessed and rated against the National Quality Standard. For in-home care and sole family day-care educators these are the standards that need to be met:

Out-of-scope services

Out-of-scope services are not regulated under either the National Quality Framework or the National Law.

These include:

  • playgroups
  • kindergyms
  • playcentres
  • classes primarily offering dance, sport, music, language or religious instruction.

Defining service type

The following steps help you work out how a service is regulated.

Step 1: Does the service provide or intend to provide education and/or care on a regular basis to children under 13 years of age?

  • Yes: Go to step 2
  • No: Go to Step 3

Step 2: Is the service type listed in s. 5(1) of the National Law or r. 5 of the National Regulations as excluded from the National Quality Framework?

  • Yes: Go to step 3
  • No: The service is in the scope of the National Quality Framework (including the National Law).

Step 3: Is the service listed as a residual service in the Act and State Regulations?

  • Yes: The service is regulated as a residual service. A modified version of the National Law and National Regulations applies but it does not come under the National Quality Framework.
  • No: The service not regulated under either the National Quality Framework or the National Law. It is an out-of-scope service.

Contact details

Education Standards Board
Phone: (08) 8226 0077 or 1800 882 413
Website: www.esb.sa.gov.au
Email: educationstandardsboard [at] sa.gov.au

This fact sheet provides guidance for approved providers of education and care services to help them operate in line with the National Quality Framework. We also recommend referring directly to the legislation: