The National Quality Standard (NQS) is a key aspect of the National Quality Framework (NQF) and sets a high, national benchmark for early childhood education and care services in Australia.
Early childhood services are rated against 7 quality areas of the National Quality Standard:
Research shows quality education and care early in life leads to better health, education and employment outcomes later in life. The early years are critical for establishing self-esteem, resilience, healthy growth and capacity to learn. Quality education and care shapes every child’s future and lays the foundation for development and learning.
The major benefits for parents and children include:
Service promotes exceptional education and care. Services rated Exceeding NQS in all 7 Quality Areas may choose to apply for this rating. Rating awarded by ACECQA.
Service goes beyond the requirements in at least 4 of the 7 quality areas.
Service provides quality education and care in all 7 quality areas.
Service provides a safe education and care program, but there are 1 of more areas identified for improvement.
Significant Improvement Required – this is a service that does not meet 1 of the 7 quality areas or a section of the legislation and there is a significant risk to the safety, health and wellbeing of children. The regulatory authority will take immediate action.