Teacher-led services

In teacher-led services 50% of the adults who educate and care for children must be qualified and registered as ECE teachers. Teacher-led services include kindergartens, education and care services. In home-based services all the coordinators must be qualified and registered.


Kindergartens accept children between two and five years old and can have set morning and afternoon sessions for different age groups. Some offer all-day or flexible sessions for a wider age range of children. Kindergartens are non-profit, community-based services managed by a Kindergarten Association and they work closely with children’s families/whānau.

Education and care services

Education and care services run all-day sessions, or flexible-hour programmes for children from birth to school age. Some services cater for specific age ranges eg under twos. They may be privately owned, owned and operated by a community group, or operated within an organisation for employees with young children. Some have a particular language and cultural base, others have a specific set of beliefs about teaching and learning eg Rudolph Steiner and Montessori services.

Home-based education and care

In the type of service education and care is provided for groups of up to four 0-5 year olds at a time, in either the educator’s home or the children’s. Each educator must belong to a Home-based service and is supported by a coordinator who is a registered ECE teacher.

Content last updated: 23 October 2009