Participants at the February 2010 Early Education Forum spent time recalling some of the more significant events in the sector’s journey. The following record was developed as part of this process
Significant Events in Early Childhood Education in Aotearoa New Zealand
1889 First independent kindergarten established in Dunedin.
1947 Report of the Consultative Committee on Pre-School Education (The Bailey Report) recommended the state takes over early childhood education.
1948 National Playcentre Federation established.
1948 Kindergarten teachers salaries paid by government.
1959 First kindergarten teachers training college opened in Auckland.
1959 NZ Kindergarten Teachers Association (NZKTA) established as a national association to represent kindergarten teachers.
1960 Childcare Centre Regulations introduced setting minimum standards for all childcare centres.
1963 First childcare training course set up by NZ Childcare Association (now Te Tari Puna Ora o Aotearoa).
1971 Committee of Inquiry into Pre-School Education (The Hill Report) supported the Bailey Report and promoted greater access to ECE services.
1975 Government grant to establish a one year childcare course at Wellington Polytechnic.
1976 First home-based education and care service established.
1980 Early Childhood Care and Education – State Services Commission report.
1982 First kohanga reo opens at Pukeatea.
1982 Early Childhood Workers Union (ECWU) registered as an industrial union for childcare workers.
1983 Childcare Training Department of Social Welfare Report released. Trained staff grant introduced.
1985 Industrial award covering childcare workers agreed, and included wages for the first time.
1985 Childcare centres with ‘A’ licence required to have at least one trained staff member. A range of qualifications were accepted.
1985 Child Care Services: impact and opportunities report by the Social Advisory Council.
1986 Childcare transferred from Department of Social Welfare to Department of Education.
1986 Three year training for kindergarten teachers working party report. Childcare Training working party report.
1986 National award for childcare workers established.
1987 Integrated three year training in early childhood education introduced.
1987 The ‘Roper Report’ released.
1988 Education to be More (The Meade Report) reported the long term benefits of ECE for children and society, and recommended a broad policy framework and equitable funding across services.
1989 Before Five: Care and Education in New Zealand established ECE as a priority social policy area and gave ECE equal status to schools.
1990 NZKTA and ECWU amalgamated to form the Combined Early Childhood Union of Aotearoa (CECUA).
1991 Government budget halved funding for under two year olds. Requirement for ‘person responsible’ in a childcare service downgraded from 120 points to 100 points. Compulsory teacher registration for kindergarten teachers made voluntary.
1991 Industrial awards abolished and employment contracts introduced (Employment Contracts Act 1991).
1992 Education (Home-based Care) Order legislated.
1993 Te Whāriki draft introduced.
1994 CECUA amalgamated with NZEI Te Riu Roa.
1996 Te Whāriki introduced and Desirable Objectives and Practices (DOPs) implemented.
1997 Future Directions report released. Developed by the sector, the report set out recommendations to support quality ECE services.
1998 Kindergarten teachers removed from the State sector under parliamentary urgency.
2000 Kindergarten teachers returned to the State sector.
2001 IRD determination negotiated for home-based educators.
2002 Ngā Huarahi Arataki ECE Strategic Plan 2002 – 2012 implemented. Goals of increased quality, participation and collaboration. Targets for 100% qualified and registered teachers in teacher-led services by 2012 established.
2005 Person responsible in an ECE service required to have a recognised teaching qualification and be a registered teacher.
2007 ‘20 hours free’ entitlement implemented for teacher led services.
2008 50% ratioed staff in teacher-led services required to be qualified and registered teachers.
2008 Home-based services changed from chartering to licensing under the 2008 regulations.
2009 Targets for 100% qualified and registered teachers in teacher-led services in 2012 reduced to 80%. Target for 100% dropped.
2010 Budget announced 100% and 8% to 99% funding bands to be removed from February 2011
2010 Licensed Early Childhood services able to claim Ministry of Education subsidies for 5 year old children.
2010 20 Hours ECE funding available to Playcentre and Kohanga reo and for 5 year olds enrolled in early childhood services.
2011 Ministry of Education released An Agenda for Amazing Children: Final Report of the ECE Taskforce.
2012 The Better Public Services targets were introduced by the National-led government including ensuring that 98 per cent of children starting school will have participated in ECE in 2016.
2012 Ministry of Social Development released the White Paper for Vulnerable Children.
2012 Minster of Education, Hekia Parata released a series of recommendations on how to improve the quality of early childhood education (ECE) based on the findings of two sector advisory groups.
2012 Minister of Education Announces the Ministerial Cross-Sector Forum on Raising Achievement in Education.
2013 Ministerial Advisory Group releases its review of the Teacher’s Council and recommendations for a new professional teaching body.