Child Care Quality Assurance Accreditation Status

Child Care Quality Assurance Systems

The CCQA systems for Long Day Care Services, Family Day Care Schemes and Outside School Hours Care Services that were administered by the National Childcare Accreditation Council (NCAC) ceased to operate on 31 December 2011.

The CCQA systems were replaced with the National Quality Framework which commenced on 1 January 2012.

The Accreditation Process

There were five steps in the accreditation process.

  1. Registration - services paid an annual fee to the NCAC to participate in the quality assurance process.
  2. Self-study - services submitted a self-study report to the NCAC within 18 months of registration.
  3. Validation - services underwent a validation visit by a NCAC trained Validator.
  4. Moderation - a moderator reviewed the information collected throughout the quality assurance process, and sought to identify patterns of quality care within the service to enable the service to be rated against the relevant quality principles.
  5. Accreditation Decision - an accreditation decision was formed by the moderator based on the ratings in the composite quality profile.

The initial accreditation process for a service was completed within two years of registration with the NCAC. For accredited services the accreditation period was two and a half years between submissions of Self-study Reports.

If a child care service was given the status of 'Not Accredited' on a first occasion, it was required to improve practice and submit a new Self-study Report to NCAC six months after the 'Not Accredited' decision.

If the service was 'Not Accredited' on a second or subsequent consecutive occasion, it was required to improve practice and submit another new Self-study Report to NCAC three months after its most recent Accreditation Decision.

Accreditation Status Descriptions:
  Definition
New Registration This service was registered to participate in Child Care Quality Assurance and was working towards the standard required for Accreditation for the first time.
Accredited This service met the standard required for Accreditation and:
  • has a Certificate of Accreditation
  • has a Quality Profile Certificate summarising its achievement in Child Care Quality Assurance which must be displayed
  • was required to maintain practice at the Accredited level through continuing self-study and quality improvement.
Not Accredited This service did not meet the standard required for Accreditation. It:
  • has a Quality Profile Certificate summarising its achievements in Child Care Quality Assurance which must be displayed
  • was provided guidance to improve practice.
Non-compliant This service was 'Non-compliant' with the relevant Child Care Quality Assurance system and:
  • had been reported as 'Non-compliant' to the Department of Education and Training.
Compliant This service was 'Compliant' following a period of Non-compliance or the Withdrawal of an Accreditation status (see definitions of 'Non-compliant' and 'Accreditation Withdrawn').
Accreditation Withdrawn 'Accreditation Withdrawn' was the status applied to a child care service whose Accreditation status had been rescinded by NCAC. This status was applied to an Accredited service in any of the following circumstances:
  • the service had serious licensing and/or child protection matters confirmed by relevant authorities
  • NCAC had received a written complaint about the service and the service had not adequately responded to NCAC regarding the issues of complaint within eight weeks of NCAC's initial correspondence with the service.
  • the service had been progressing through Step 3: Validation to Step 5: Accreditation Decision of the relevant Child Care Quality Assurance system at the time a licensing, child protection, complaint or other issue became evident which resulted in a delay in the Accreditation Decision for more than six months after the date of the service's Validation Visit.
  • If the issues of concern had been resolved to the satisfaction of NCAC, the service's Accreditation status would have become 'Compliant' (see definition of 'Compliant').
Participating This service:
  • was a non-mainstream Child Care Benefit funded service which was not required to participate in the CCQA systems. However, it was registered to participate in the relevant CCQA system and was working towards the standard required for Accreditation.

Spot Checks

A Spot Check involved a short unannounced visit up to 3 hours to a randomly selected child care service. A NCAC Validator conducted the Spot Check to check that the service was meeting, as a minimum, the Satisfactory standards outlined in the relevant CCQA Quality Practices Guides.

Certificate of Accreditation and Quality Profile Certificate

The Quality Profile Certificate contains a Composite Quality Profile and shows each Quality Area for the relevant CCQA system (either a long day care service or a family day care scheme or an outside school hours care service) and the service's level of performance against the ratings:

  • High Quality
  • Good Quality
  • Satisfactory (this is the standard for Accreditation)
  • Unsatisfactory

The bolded black line on the Quality Profile Certificate indicates the Satisfactory level. A service must meet this level in all Quality Areas to be Accredited.

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