Assessment and Rating under the Education and Care Services National Law

Version Number

1.2

Implementation Date

12/04/2016

Scope

All Early Years

Purpose

​This procedure outlines the responsibilities of the chief executive and delegated officers of the Department of Education and Training (the Regulatory Authority) in relation to assessing and rating an education and care service under the Education and Care Services National Law (National Law).

Overview

​The National Law requires the Regulatory Authority to approve, regulate and assess early childhood education and care services in Queensland.

The assessment and rating of education and care services is a key component of the National Quality Framework. The purpose of assessment and rating under the National Quality Framework is to determine whether services meet the National Quality Standard and, if so, at what level.  The process is designed to promote continuous quality improvement.

The National Quality Standard details the seven Quality Areas against which services are assessed and rated as follows:

  1. Educational program and practice
  2. Children’s health and safety
  3. Physical environment
  4. Staffing arrangements
  5. Relationships with children
  6. Collaborative partnerships with families and communities
  7. Leadership and service management.

Delegated officers can determine an overall rating of:

  • Significant Improvement Required
  • Working Towards National Quality Standard
  • Meeting National Quality Standard or
  • Exceeding National Quality Standard. 

An education and care service that is rated as Exceeding National Quality Standard and meets the criteria for excellence is then eligible to apply to the Australian Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) for a rating of Excellent.

Responsibilities

Chief Executive
Under section 14 of the Education and Care Services National Law (Queensland) Act 2011, the chief executive of the Department of Education and Training is the Regulatory Authority and is responsible for approving, regulating and assessing education and care services in Queensland.  The chief executive’s powers under the National Law are delegated to appropriately qualified officers within the Regulatory Authority as detailed in Summary of Timeframes and Delegations under the National Law.

Delegated officers
Certain delegated officers hold responsibilities for assessing and rating education and care services on behalf of the chief executive under the National Law.

A delegated officer who performs assessment and rating functions must:

  • Successfully complete assessment and rating training and testing
  • Undertake the assessment and rating of services, ensuring that Approved Providers are afforded procedural fairness throughout the process
  • Perform a reassessment and re-rating on a service, as required.

Process

Commence an Assessment and Rating
Delegated officers must:

  • Either:
  • Delegated officers may:
    • Conduct a desktop review of the service
    • Arrange an assessment and rating visit

Conduct an Assessment
Delegated officers must:

Determine a Rating
Delegated officers must:

  • Provide a draft of the assessment and rating report to the Approved Provider, and consider any feedback received on the draft report
  • Provide the final version of the assessment and rating report to the Approved Provider
  • Inform the Approved Provider of available avenues for review.

Detailed information on the process of how to undertake an assessment and rating or reassessment and re-rating is in the:

Online Resources

Review Date

31/01/2018
Attribution CC BY

Assessment and Rating
An assessment and rating is a quality-rating process undertaken by the Regulatory Authority of education and care services under Part 5, Division 1 of the National Law. During the process, education and care services are assessed by delegated officers and rated against the National Quality Standard in seven Quality Areas.  At the conclusion of the process, an education and care service rating is determined and published on a National Register and must be displayed at the service. 

Reassessment and Re-rating
A separate quality-rating process undertaken by delegated officers of the Regulatory Authority, where an education and care service that has been assessed and rated is then reassessed and re-rated because:

  • a delegated officer has elected to reassess and re-rate the education and care service (or element of an education and care service) under section 138 of the National Law; or
  • an Approved Provider has applied for a reassessment and re-rating of the education and care service (or any element of an education and care service) under section 139 of the National Law.

Reassessment and re-rating under Part 5, Division 2 of the National Law is a distinct process, and is pursued outside of typical assessment and rating activities performed under Part 5, Division 1 of the National Law.

National Quality Framework
The National Quality Framework comprises the:

Authorised Officer
An Authorised Officer is a person authorised by the chief executive’s delegate under section 195 of the National Law in the Instrument of Authorisation of Authorised Officers under the Education and Care Services National Law to exercise the powers, functions, authorities and duties, conferred or imposed on Authorised Officers.

Procedural Fairness
Procedural fairness includes:

  1. the opportunity to review any relevant and adverse material which is before the decision-maker and is given the opportunity to present a case before a decision is made
  2. the decision-maker is not biased and does not have the appearance of bias
  3. the decision-maker relies upon credible evidence to make their decision.

Denial of procedural fairness is a ground for applying for a statutory order of review under the Judicial Review Act 1991 (Qld).