Family day care

Family day care offers children from birth to 12 years of age an education and care option in small groups (up to 7 children), traditionally in a home or family learning environment.

Facts about family day care services

  • Provide education and care for children from birth to 12 years old (for up to 7 children - including 4 children not yet in school).
  • Available for a full day, part day, overnight or weekends.
  • Educators have individual working hours and fee structures.
  • Family day care educators must:
    • hold or be working towards a Certificate III qualification
    • hold approved first aid qualifications including anaphylaxis management training and emergency asthma management training.
  • Services must comply with a range of legislative requirements
  • Educators are monitored and supported by a family day care scheme coordination unit including qualified family day care coordinators.
  • New services must have one coordinator for every 15 educators for the first 12 months of operation.

Choosing a quality service

Watch our latest videos on quality in family day care services and discover the elements to consider when choosing a service.

Quality standards and assessments

National standards apply to family day care services including a new quality rating system that will assess the quality of services and help you decide which one to pick.

Search for local service ratings.

Find out how services are assessed.

Find a family day care service

Find a family day care service - select "Family Day Care" above the search box.

If you are unsure which service to select, see:

Enrolment requirements

Some family day care services can enrol children at any time; others may have a waiting list. You will need to contact the service to discuss their enrolment policies.

When you enrol you will be asked to provide:

  • the child’s full name, date of birth, gender and address
  • the name, address, and contact details of each known parent of the child
  • details of any people:
    • authorised to collect the child
    • to notify in an emergency involving the child if a parent cannot be immediately contacted
    • authorised to consent to medical treatment of, or to authorise administration of medication to the child
    • who can authorise an educator to take the child outside the education and care service premises
  • details of any court orders, parenting orders or parenting plans in relation to the child or access to the child
  • the language used in the child’s home
  • details of any special considerations, e.g. cultural, religious or additional needs
  • other relevant health information, e.g. details of the child’s registered medical practitioner, any specific healthcare needs, allergies, medical management plans, or dietary restrictions and immunisation status.

Rebates and financial assistance

You may be eligible for rebates and financial assistance such as the Child Care Subsidy to help cover the cost of fees.

Talk to a family day care service provider about their fees.

Getting started

Before your child starts you should contact your service and discuss practical matters such as:

  • what you will need to bring each day for your child
  • will meals and nappies be provided or will you need to bring your own
  • can they bring their favourite toy or blanket?

You should also let the provider know of any special requirements your child has before they start (although it is recommended you discuss this before enrolling).

Find out how to prepare for your child's first day.