Go to top of page

<div class="field-name-table-of-contents"></div>

Under the Freedom of Information Act 1991 (SA) and Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Cwlth), you are legally entitled to access documents held by public sector organisations.

You may also apply to have records about you changed if you think they are incomplete, incorrect, out-of-date or misleading or to seek a review of a determination made under either Act.

However, you may not be able to access all documents, e.g. if they affect the personal affairs of another person, are commercially confidential or would undermine law enforcement. Cabinet documents and some internal working documents are also not available.

Access to documents held by the Education Standards Board (ESB) must be sought under the Commonwealth Freedom of Information (FOI) Act or the SA FOI Act. These Acts apply to ESB operations that come under the Education and Early Childhood Services (Registration and Standards) Act 2011 (SA). Find out which FOI Act is relevant to your request in the 'Making an FOI request' section.

Structure and functions

The Education Standards Board was established as a statutory authority on 1 January 2012 under the Education and Early Childhood Services (Registration and Standards) Act (the Act), which incorporates the Education and Care Services National Law (South Australia).

Under the Act, the Board regulates the provision of education and early childhood services in South Australia. The Board has delegated their regulatory powers and functions to the Chief Executive who is also responsible for the operations and effective management of the ESB office.

For further information about the Education Standards Board, please see the 'About us' section our website.

Our policies

Development of policies

ESB policy development is the responsibility of the Board, Chief Executive and relevant business unit. Policy development processes do not include public participation.

Policy documents

Some ESB policy documents are freely available on our website and can be broadly classified as relating to either:

  • regulation of education and early childhood services
  • corporate functions.

Types of documents held

The ESB holds a variety of documents, either in hardcopy or electronic formats, including:

  • reports
  • policy documents
  • discussion papers
  • guidelines
  • client records
  • correspondence and administrative records
  • internal policies
  • staff-related records
  • transport records
  • records for school education services
  • records for early childhood education and care services.

Public documents available without FOI request

Two documents people commonly want to inspect are available online, free of charge, with no need to make a freedom of information request:

Many other documents are available on our website and include:

  • information for families about services
  • information on school registration procedures
  • support for services and schools
  • annual reports and strategic plans
  • fact sheets for early childhood services.

Please check the website before applying for something that has a prescribed fee schedule.

Making an FOI request

If you want to apply to access ESB documents that are not publicly available, or amend records relating to personal affairs considered incomplete, incorrect, out-of-date or misleading, this must be done under the relevant FOI Act.

Requests relating to early childhood education and care services should be made under the Commonwealth FOI Act. This includes documents relating to:

  • family day care
  • long day care
  • out of school hours services
  • preschool (kindergarten) programs.

Requests relating to ‘residual’ early childhood services should also be made under the Commonwealth Freedom of Information Act. This includes documents relating to:

  • in-home care services
  • occasional care services
  • rural and mobile care services
  • individual family care services.

Requests relating to schools or other ESB functions should be made under the SA FOI Act. If you are still unsure which legislation to apply under or wish to inspect a policy document, please contact our FOI Officer. More information about how to make an FOI request is available on the 'Freedom of information' section of our website. 

Note: Some documents can be accessed without having to make a formal FOI request. Please see 'Public documents available without an FOI request' (above) for more information.

If you are unhappy with a decision, you can request an internal review. If you are still not happy with a decision or we do not give what was requested, you can request an external review. External review of these decisions can be either by Ombudsman SA, the South Australian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (SACAT) or the National Education and Care Services Freedom of Information Commissioner.


The prescribed fee must be paid with your application form. If you are unable to pay the fee, proof of financial hardship must be provided with your application. See the current fee notice under the SA FOI Act.

How long will it take?

We will respond to your FOI request within 30 days of it being received. We will let you know within 20 calendar days of receiving your application if your application request will take longer than 30 days to be completed.

Further information

For further information, see:

This Information statement is published pursuant to section 9 of the Freedom of Information Act 1991 (SA).