Laws and Regulations

About Legislation

As of January 2012, OSHC services became regulated as part of the National Quality Framework. Detailed information about the NQF is available on the NQF Overview page.

Education and Care Service National Law Act 2010

The objective of this Law is to establish a national quality framework to guide the delivery of education and care services to children. The National Law also establishes the Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA), which is responsible for ensuring the NQF is implemented consistently across all states and territories. The Regulatory Authority for NSW is the Department of Education and Communities (DEC).

A copy of the Law can be accessed from: www.acecqa.gov.au/national-quality-framework/legislation/

 

Education and Care Services National Regulations

The National Quality Framework and associated regulatory system is enacted through the legislation establishing the national system. The Education and Care Services National Regulations support the legislation and provide detail on a range of operational requirements for an education and care service including:

  • Application processes for provider approval, service approval and supervisor certificates
  • Setting out the rating scale
  • The process for the rating and assessment of services against the National Quality Standard
  • Minimum requirements relating to the operation of education and care services organised around each of the seven Quality Areas
  • Arrangements to move existing services into the new system.

The National Regulations also set out the range of transaction fees applicable to an education and care service.

A copy of the National Regulations can be accessed from: www.acecqa.gov.au/national-quality-framework/national-regulations/

 

Child Care Management System (CCMS)

Child Care Management System (CCMS) is a national child care computer system that provides details of Child Care Benefit (CCB) entitlements and child care supply and usage, to families, services and the government.

The Department of Education and Training CCMS Help Desk will answer any questions services have about CCB payments and policy, including information about your mandatory reporting requirements under CCMS.

Help Desk staff will also assist you to resolve any specific issues related to CCMS, however, cannot assist you with matters that are best addressed to your software provider such as assistance with how to use your software package.

  • The Help Desk telephone number is 1300 667 276
  • The Help Desk facsimile number is 1300 663 429
  • A Help Desk mailbox for enquiries or non-urgent issues is available at:ccmshelpdesk@education.gov.au

Help Desk operators are available from 9.00am – 5.30pm AEST Monday to Friday.
General questions on the CCMS can be directed to the following addresses at any time:

1) Email to ccms@education.gov.au or ccmshelpdesk@education.gov.au or

2) Mail to:

Child Care Management System
Child Care Policy & Payments
Location code – 1 HWBB
GPO Box 9880
CANBERRA ACT 260

Working With Children Check and Child Protection (Prohibited Employment) Act 1998

The Working With Children Check applies to all people seeking to work in child-related employment. These checks are mandatory.

All OSHC Services must register as employers for this process – has your service registered?

More information is available on: www.kidsguardian.nsw.gov.au/Working-with-children/working-with-children-check

Child-related employment is any work (paid or unpaid) of the following kinds that involve direct and unsupervised contact with children this includes OSHC Services.

Please ensure all staff and volunteers complete a working with children check.

If you have any questions you can always call Network on: (02) 9212 3244

Working with Children Check updates are published every three months by email. ?To join the email list subscribe online when you go to the website listed above.

Current Legislation for OOSH services in NSW

Association Incorporation Act 2009

This act allows individual associations to create a legal identity so that individual members are given a legal framework to operate from.

All services operating as an incorporated association should have a constitution or adopt some rules for the association. Management committee members have a responsibility to act in the best interests of the association and appoint a public officer.

Access a copy from the NSW Office of Fair Trading: www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au

Children Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998

This act is about protecting and preventing child abuse. Anyone working with children is covered by this law and is a mandatory reporter. This means individuals have the responsibility to report abuse occurring or if suspecting abuse. Penalties apply if found to be negligent in this responsibility.

OOSH Management have an obligation to inform staff of their obligations under this act and provide the relevant information to support them in their role (Mandatory Reporting Kit).  It is essential for staff to be undergoing Child Protection training.

Access a copy from www.keepthemsafe.nsw.gov.au

Industrial Relations Act 1996

This act provides a framework for the conduct of industrial relations in NSW. Employees have the right to be paid according to the appropriate award and conditions adhered to.

All services are required to have a copy of the appropriate award on site and abide by its minimum requirements.

Access a copy from the Office Of Industrial Relations NSW Department of Commerce: www.industrialrelations.nsw.gov.au

Food Act 2003 (NSW)

This act sets out standards for people who prepare food as part of a business. It is there to ensure food is both safe and suitable for human consumption. It stipulates food handling, and food preparation and storage of food.

Under the NSW Food Act 2003 all food-handling businesses in NSW, including OOSH are required to “notify” their details to the NSW Food Authority. There is no charge to do this online, go to: www.foodnotify.nsw.gov.au.  It is also recommended that staff undergo some training in this area.

Access a copy from the NSW Food Authority: www.foodauthority.nsw.gov.au

Work Health and Safety Act 2011

Work Health and Safety (WHS) is about safety in the workplace and emphasises that everyone has an individual responsibility. This means individuals taking the necessary steps to prevent accidents and report them.

Each OOSH service should have policies and procedures in place to ensure hazards are recorded and acted on. WHS issues should be regularly discussed at staff meetings. Staff should also attend WHS training.

Access a copy from Workcover NSW: www.workcover.nsw.gov.au

(Commonwealth) Privacy Act 1988

This act sets out standards for the lawful collection of information necessary to the organisations activities. Individuals have a right to know why the information is being collected and who has access to it. All information needs to be secured appropriately.

OOSH services will need to have a policy and notify families how they intend to use the information. It is recommended that a Privacy Statement be on display at the service.

Further information can be found at the site of The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner

United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child

The Convention on the Rights of the Child is an international treaty that recognises the human rights of children, defined as persons up to the age of 18 years. The Convention establishes an international law that states parties must ensure that all children—without discrimination in any form—benefit from special protection measures and assistance; have access to services such as education and health care; can develop their personalities, abilities and talents to the fullest potential; grow up in an environment of happiness, love and understanding; and are informed about and participate in, achieving their rights in an accessible and active manner.

The Convention on the Rights of the Child is the most widely and rapidly ratified human rights treaty in history. Only two countries, Somalia and the United States, have not ratified this celebrated agreement. Somalia is currently unable to proceed to ratification as it has no recognised government. By signing the Convention, the United States has signalled its intention to ratify but has yet to do so. All the important information about the UNCRC is available from www.unicef.org/crc

Download Poster: UN Convention on theRights of the Child In Child Friendly Language

Useful Links for Developing Policies and Procedures

Australasian Legal Information Institute
(a joint facility of UTS and UNSW)
Use this site to look up current legislation and regulations at a state and Commonwealth level.
www.austlii.edu.au

Commission for Young People
www.kids.nsw.gov.au

Human Rights Commission
www.hreoc.gov.au

NSW Department of Commerce Office of Industrial Relations   
www.industrialrelations.nsw.gov.au

Privacy – Office of the Australian Information Commissioner
The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner has responsibility for regulating and providing advice on the operation of the Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act) and other privacy-related legislation.
www.oaic.gov.au/privacy/privacy-news

Workcover
OH&S issues
www.workcover.nsw.gov.au