What is Out of School Hours Care?

About OOSH

What is OOSH?

Out of School Hours Care is care provided primarily to children of primary school age. This includes:

  • Before School Care;
  • After School Care; and
  • Vacation Care.

Out of School Hours Care is best known as OOSH in NSW, but you may also see it referred to as OSHC by government and colloquially in other states and territories.

The acronym OOSH has been used in NSW since the early 1980s. Out of School Hours (OOSH) historically encompassed a variety of activities and service types that provided a safe space for children when they weren’t at school or home.

Since January 1, 2012 OOSH Services in NSW have been included in the National Education and Care Services Regulation. All OOSH services are required to implement a program based on “My Time Our Place” – the Framework for School Age Care“.

OOSH providers offer different services to meet the needs of their community – be it Before School Care, After School Care, Vacation Care, or a combination of those services. Service fees and operating times will vary between services across NSW.

Most OOSH Services are registered and approved to receive Child Care Subsidy and Additional Child Care Subsidy, allowing them to subsidise parents’ fees.

OOSH services aim to provide safe, caring environments for school age children, which meets the needs of their families. OOSHs provide supervised care, play and recreation programs based on the interests, abilities and development of the children attending the service. The majority of OOSH Services operate from school sites, however there are a variety of Providers in different locations.

OOSH Service providers include:

  • Management Committees (often called Parent Management Committees)
  • P&Cs
  • Local Councils
  • Neighbourhood or Community Centres
  • Statewide Charities
  • Religious Organisations
  • Small or Stand-Alone Private Providers
  • Large Corporate Providers