News and publications Page ContentFind the latest news from Early Childhood Education and Care including: QKindy magazine A to Z of Early Childhood - our monthly e-newsletter for services The Early Years Count newsletter - our quarterly e-newsletter for parents NQF e-bulletin ECS e-bulletin Media releases Sector reports Australian Early Development Census - for the ECEC sector Early Childhood Education and Care Services Census Early Years Centres - summary report and overview SLEEP - Sleep learning for early education professionalsLatest news Lifting Our Game: Report of the Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools through Early Childhood Interventions Annual performance report on quality Intensive Early Childhood Development Pilot evaluation National Quality Framework changes from 1 October 2017Mandatory reporting changes for early childhood professionals commenced 1 July 2017 New website for parents ECEC Emergency Closure portal Check your details on national registers Lifting Our Game: Report of the Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools through Early Childhood InterventionsAn independent review was commissioned by state and territory officials in Australia to complement the Commonwealth Government’s Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools.The review was led by Professor Deborah Brennan and Sue Pascoe AM who were asked to consider and make recommendations on the most effective interventions in early childhood, with a focus on school readiness, improving achievement in schools, and future success in employment or further education.The report finds that quality early childhood education makes a significant contribution to achieving educational excellence in schools. There is growing evidence that participation in quality early childhood education improves school readiness. Children who participate in high quality early childhood education are more likely to complete year 12 and are less likely to repeat grades or require additional support. High quality early childhood education also has broader impacts; it is linked with higher levels of employment, income and financial security, improved health outcomes and reduced crime. It helps build the skills children will need for the jobs of the future.The views and opinions expressed in the review belong to the review and do not necessarily reflect the views of, or have the endorsement of, any state or territory government, or of any minister, department or official.Read the Lifting Our Game report (PDF, 2.64MB) and media statement. Annual Performance Report – National Partnership on the National Quality AgendaIn line with the National Partnership Agreement on the National Quality Agenda for Early Childhood Education and Care 2015-16 to 2017-18, Australian Children's Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA), on behalf of all governments, has produced an annual performance report that includes an assessment against the objectives and outcomes of the agreement.Key findings and messages from the inaugural annual performance report highlight the positive progress made against a number of outcomes and objectives, including evidence of continuous quality improvement and the achievement of efficiencies in administering the National Quality Framework (NQF). The continued strong sector support for the NQF is also highlighted.Read the report. Intensive Early Childhood Development Pilot evaluationThe Queensland Government developed the Intensive Early Childhood Development (IECD) pilot program to support vulnerable children and families by embedding an early childhood learning and development focus within established family support services. The pilot program targeted support for families with children aged birth to five years who were experiencing multiple and complex issues.Based on the success of the Intensive Early Childhood Development (IECD) pilot, the Queensland Government will fund the new Pathways for Early Learning and Development (PELD) initiative. An Executive Summary of the IECD pilot evaluation report can be found here. (PDF, 1.31MB) National Quality Framework changes from 1 October 2017The Australian, state and territory education Ministers agreed to changes to the National Quality Framework (NQF) following a review of the National Partnership on the National Quality Agenda for Early Childhood Education and Care (NP NQA).The review commenced in 2014 to assess whether the objectives and outcomes of the NQF are being met in the most efficient and effective way with a goal of improving the quality of early childhood education and care in Australia.Overall the NP NQA review found the NQF is an important and successful reform with strong stakeholder support for quality improvements to support children's learning and development.After five years of operation, some technical and operational improvements have been made to the NQF to promote national consistency and streamline and reduce regulatory burden.These changes recognise the evolving nature of the sector and seek to address new challenges by maintaining a key focus on quality outcomes for all children, particularly in relation to health, safety and wellbeing.Changes to the NQF through legislation began on 1 October 2017 in Queensland with a revised National Quality Standard to be introduced on 1 February 2018, subject to the passage of legislation.All governments and the Australian Children's Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) are committed to supporting the early childhood education and care sector to understand and prepare for these changes prior to implementation.Visit the ACECQA website for an overview of the changesStay informed of the latest updates - subscribe to the ACECQA newsletter.Mandatory reporting changes for early childhood professionals commenced 1 July 2017New obligations apply from 1 July 2017 to certain early childhood education and care (ECEC) professionals who work in approved services as they become mandatory reporters of suspected child abuse Am I a mandatory reporter? ECEC mandatory reporters are:approved providers who are individuals (not associations, corporations or other entities such as voluntary parent management committees);nominated supervisors;supervisors; family day care (FDC) coordinators; andeducators (including early childhood teachers and FDC educators).Volunteers and individuals under the age of 18 years will not be required under legislation to report to Child Safety Services, however like any concerned person, they have the option to make a voluntary report. How can I learn about my role as a mandatory reporter by 1 July 2017? The Department of Education will continue to work with the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services and the sector to ensure early childhood professionals are supported by training and resources. To learn more:watch the online training videowatch a recent live panel question and answer webinarvisit the Child Safety website and read about mandatory reportinglook out for information resource packs that have been sent to all approved services. Additional copies can be downloaded from the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services website.It is important to note that, in many cases, making ECEC professionals mandatory reporters isn’t about changing current practices, rather it formalises the policies and procedures already in place for protecting children. New website for parentsThe Early Years Count website is an online resource with information about brain development and activities and tips for parents to support their children's early learning and development.Research shows 90 per cent of a child's brain development occurs within the first five years of life and by the age of three, a child's brain has more connections than at any other time in their life.So it's never too early for parents to start communicating with their children, who learn every day through new experiences.The website provides do-it-yourself activities and tips for encouraging their children to learn through the five ways critical to early learning and development. These include talking with and listening to children, reading and counting, caring for and encouraging children and playing with them so they can explore and express ideas.Parents can find specific information about activities relevant to them and their families by entering their child's age, geographical location and activity preferences into a content filter.For more information visit The Early Years Count website. ECEC Emergency Closure portalA secure online portal provides Approved Providers with a convenient way to advise the Regulatory Authority of any service closures due to a natural disaster.The ECEC Emergency Closure portal is available 24 hours a day from a computer, smart phone or tablet.In a few clicks, Approved Providers can comply with the legislative requirements under the National Law to notify the Regulatory Authority within 24 hours of any incident that requires them to close a service.Importantly, any closures logged through the portal are also displayed on the Department of Education's Natural disasters and closed education facilities website to ensure families and the broader community have 'real time' information regarding service closures.Approved Providers can continue to notify the Regulatory Authority through the current process of contacting their local regional office and emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Check your details on national registersNational registers of approved providers, services and certified supervisors are available on the Australian Children's Education and Care Quality Authority's (ACECQA) website.While ACECQA and the department have taken steps to ensure details in the registers are accurate, it is important approved providers and services regularly check their information.You can update your details including email, phone number and postal address on ACECQA's National Quality Agenda IT system.To update some items such as the number of approved places at your service or the conditions on your approval you must submit an application to the department to amend your service approval.For information, visit ACECQA's website.