WA Regulator clarifies Regulation 124 with particular emphasis on FDC
The Department of Communities, which serves as the regulatory authority in Western Australia, has issued clarification about Regulation 124 after discussion with the family day care (FDC) sector over how the regulation was being interpreted and applied, specifically how many children preschool age or under can be educated and cared for by a FDC educator.
The current regulation 124 states that an FDC educator:
- can have up to seven children in their care at any one time; and,
- no more than four of the seven children can be preschool age or under.
The Department said that the policy intent of Regulation 124 is to ensure that educators have only a maximum of four children aged four or under in the care of an FDC educator, with an overall maximum of seven children. This comes from a safety, quality, and risk management perspective.
The Department has been working with national and state legislative processes to draft up the necessary regulation changes. The amended regulations are currently going through final approval processes with the intended commencement date for the new regulation being 1 January 2022.
The amendment will state that no more than four of the children under the care of the educator can be four years of age or under on 30 June of the current calendar year.
How to determine the ratio of children four or under
Applying the ratio per the incoming Regulation 124 amendment:
- If a child turns four years of age any time from 1 January to 31 December, they will be counted in the 1:4 ratio.
- If a child turns five years of age any time from 1 January to 30 June, they will not be part of the 1:4 ratio – they will be of compulsory school age and required to commence or be attending school.
- If a child turns five years of age any time from 1 July to 31 December, they will be counted in the 1:4 ratio because they were still 4 years of age on 30 June.
To view this announcement please see here.
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