Please note: these resources were produced to provide information to families and services in relation to the Child Care Quality Assurance systems which were replaced by the National Quality Framework on 1 January 2012. The information contained in these resources was current as at 15 November 2011. Please see information produced under the National Quality Framework for current recommendations in relation to quality child care.
Choosing and using child care
The following document will provide you with helpful information about finding and choosing quality care and assist with questions you may have about using a child care service.
Embracing quality child care
Embracing quality child care is a collection of NCAC's family factsheets. This booklet provides families with information about aspects of child care including advice and tips which will assist in preparing for and recognising quality child care practice.
Children's behaviour in child care
One of the most distressing reports that you can receive from your child care service is that your child has been bitten, and it can be even more distressing to be told that your child has bitten another child or an adult. Biting can also be challenging for even the most experienced of educators, as biting incidents often cause strong emotional reactions in families.
Guidance is most effective when educators and families develop joint strategies for guiding children's behaviour which can be implemented both at the service and at home.
Children's wellbeing can be challenged if they experience bullying by another child or a group of children which is why families and child care professionals share concerns about how to prevent bullying and how to deal with bullying when it occurs.
Health and safety in child care
Families with children in child care should be able to see standards of hygiene used by educators that minimise the spread of infection. Families can assist services to maintain a hygienic environment by following simple hygiene rules while they are at the service and by using good hygiene methods with their children at home.
Children in child care can come into contact with many other children and adults and in this environment they can contract infectious illnesses. Quality Assurance standards require child care services to implement specific strategies to minimise the spread of infectious illnesses.
Promoting children's health is an important aspect of quality child care. Regardless of whether or not food is provided, your child care service has a responsibility to promote good nutrition for your child while they are in care, and they should provide your family with current information about healthy eating.
Using child care when your child has special health needs can be daunting. It is important that child care services work with you and your family to ensure your child is safely and equitably included in the child care environment.
Your child care service should ensure that their sleep an rest routines are safe and meet your child’s individual sleep and rest requirements. Safe sleep guidelines for children aged 0-2 should be based on recommendations made by the SIDS and Kids organisation which is the leading authority on safe sleeping.
Learning to use the toilet is a significant milestone in your child’s development. The educators at your child care service will be able to support your child while at care by working with you to develop and implement toilet training routines and strategies that are consistent between home and care.
Programs and experiences for children in child care
A child care program provides children with a variety of experiences that are designed to promote and extend their development. A good program is responsive to the specific needs, interests and developmental ranges of all children in the group.
Quality care can be found in both centre-based long day care services and in family day care, where children are cared for in a family home setting. This factsheet will give you some information about what to look for and ask about when finding quality care for your baby.
Quality care can be found in both centre-based long day care services and in family day care, where children are cared for in a family home setting. This factsheet will give you some information about what to look for and ask about when finding quality care for your toddler.
Quality care can be found in both centre-based long day care services and in family day care, where children are cared for in a family home setting. This factsheet will give you some information about what to look for and ask about when finding quality care for your preschool age child.
Quality care can be found in both outside school hours care services and in family day care, where children are cared for in a family home setting. This factsheet will give you some information about what to look for and ask about when finding quality care for your school age child.
Educators working in family day care, long day care and outside school hours care may tell families that they use a 'play based' approach for children's learning and development. Play is important for children's wellbeing and learning.
Research indicates that experiencing a positive transition to school will benefit children's success at school in the long term. It is important that the transition process is balanced and responsive to your child's individual needs.
Families who have children with additional needs may feel extra stress because of concerns about how their child will ‘fit in’ to a mainstream child care setting, and how well their child’s specific needs will be met by the service. This Factsheet will provide you with information about what you can expect from a service in relation to your child’s needs, as well as useful strategies for promoting the best outcomes for your child.
Using child care
Maintaining consistent routines and experiences for children across home and child care is important for a range of reasons. This is especially true for babies and young children, who may be entering care for the first time. Having elements of familiarity can relieve children’s anxiety about separating from their family, particularly while they are settling into care.
Children’s learning and wellbeing are enhanced when families and child care professionals work together in partnership to promote the best outcomes for children. Quality care occurs when child care professionals understand each child’s family, culture and community, and when they use this knowledge to provide experiences in ways that are meaningful to the child.
The clothes we wear and the way we dress are an important part of our everyday experience. What they wear can influence your child’s health, safety, comfort, and wellbeing. This Factsheet will give you an overview of some things to consider in relation to the clothes your child wears in child care.
Placing your child in child care is an exciting, though sometimes overwhelming, experience for many families. Before you begin using child care, you will need to consider issues such as when you want to start using care, what child care options are available, how to access child care, and what you might expect when your child starts care. This Factsheet provides you with information to guide you through these issues, and to assist you to make informed decisions about the type of child care your family wants to use.
Families may feel awkward or uncomfortable about raising concerns with their child care service. However, your service should have effective complaints handling procedures that will help to promote positive outcomes for families, children and the service.
Settling your child into child care can often be an emotional experience for both you and your child. It is a major transition in your lives where your child will be cared for in a new setting, by somebody other than a family member. It may be that your child is moving to a new room or section of the service, or commencing care in a different service. In any of these situations, children may experience difficulties separating from their family or familiar caregivers.