Monitoring activities

Why do we monitor early childhood education and care services?

We monitor compliance with legislative requirements to ensure the safety, health and wellbeing of children attending education and care services.

Monitoring is a proactive way of assessing and influencing compliance with the Education and Care Services National Law Act (South Australia) 2010 (National Law SA) and the Education and Care Services National Regulations 2011 (National Regulations).

Information gathered from monitoring activities is used to identify strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for continuous improvement in the delivery of quality services and to understand broader regulatory trends and issues.

Monitoring can be scheduled or unscheduled and can be conducted on site or via video or telephone conference.

What are monitoring activities?

Our monitoring activities include:

  • assessment and rating
  • targeted campaigns
  • monitoring visits
  • data analysis
  • notifications and complaints
  • investigations

These are described in more detail in our compliance and enforcement policy.

How does the Board decide which services to monitor?

A variety of factors are taken into consideration when selecting services. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • compliance history of the regulated party
  • notification of a serious incident or complaint
  • recent changes to service approval
  • new service approval
  • service type
  • quality rating

What can you expect during a monitoring visit?

A regulatory officer will explain the reason for the visit and will request to sight documentation, hold discussions and observe educator practice. Regulatory officers will also request to view the service Quality Improvement Plan (QIP) during a monitoring visit.

Monitoring visits also assess performance against our regulatory priorities.

A monitoring visit, that is not an assessment and rating visit, generally takes about an hour. The length of the visit will depend on reason for the visit and any identified non-compliance during the visit.

Service pre-approval visits occur as part of the application assessment and determination process and take around an hour. During the visit the regulatory officer will view the site layout, including exits, outdoor and indoor physical environments, staffing and administration arrangements and policies to ensure the service meets the requirements of the National Law and Regulations.

A post-approval visit occurs within 6 months of a new service opening and has an educational focus on the service’s QIP; timely, accurate and well-documented notifications; the assessment and rating process and regulatory priorities.

What happens if non-compliance is detected at a service?

The regulatory officer will conduct a risk assessment to determine an appropriate and proportionate regulatory response.  This risk assessment considers the seriousness of the matter, compliance history of the regulated party, the service’s attitude and response to the non-compliance and the risk of potential non-compliance in the future.

When non-compliance is identified, an regulatory officer may:

  • require the service to take immediate action to safeguard children.
  • provide education and guidance to support the service to achieve voluntary compliance.
  • require the service to submit evidence or a written statement to demonstrate that compliance has been achieved.
  • recommend to the Registrar that further statutory sanctions are issued.

Further information can be found in our compliance and enforcement policy.