Assessment & Rating

The National Quality Framework incorporates an assessment and rating process to promote continuous quality improvement.

Education and Care Services are assessed and rated by authorised officers of the Board against seven quality areas in the National Quality Standard.


National Quality Standard

The National Quality Standard sets a national benchmark for the quality of children’s education and care services and gives services and families a better understanding of a quality service.

The National Quality Standards comprise seven quality areas that include:

Quality Area 1 – Educational program and practice

Quality Area 2 – Children’s health and safety

Quality Area 3 – Physical environment

Quality Area 4 – Staffing arrangements

Quality Area 5 – Relationships with children

Quality Area 6 – Collaborative partnerships with families and communities

Quality Area 7 – Governance and Leadership

The National Quality Standard contains up to two or three different standards in each of the seven quality areas. These standards are high-level outcome statements. Each standard contains a number of elements that describe the outcomes that contribute to the standard being achieved. There are 40 elements in total.

Quality ratings

The National Regulations prescribe five rating levels within the assessment and rating process. These are:


Exceeding National Quality Standard

Meeting National Quality Standard

Working Towards National Quality Standard

Significant Improvement Required

For further information see:


Assessment and rating process

The National Quality Standard is accompanied by a national quality rating and assessment process providing a national approach to the assessment and reporting of the quality of early childhood education and care services across the variety of service settings.

Quality assessment and rating is an opportunity for your service to gain valuable feedback and ensure families have access to comparative information about their children’s education and care. The process of assessment and rating includes:

  • an initial notification that your service is in the assessment and rating cycle
  • submission of your quality improvement plan
  • assessment and rating visit
  • receipt of draft report
  • opportunity for providing feedback
  • opportunity to request an internal review.

For further information regarding the assessment and rating process see ACECQA’s assessment and rating process. For information regarding providing feedback please see:

ACECQA publishes quarterly NQF Snapshots that provide information about assessment and rating progress.



Service quality ratings are published in the register of approved providers and services for all services that have been assessed and rated and received a final rating report. The link to the register is available on our Register page.


Scheduling Assessment and Ratings

Scheduling Assessments and Ratings


Assessment and rating resources

National Quality Standard Ratings

National Quality Standards

Assessment and Ratings Process

Assessment and Ratings Resources

Quality Improvement Plans

Excellent Rating

Review of Ratings