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Funding Parity with 'Free' Kindergartens

click here for the Pay Parity Agreement Form (if your service supports pay parity for qualified teachers then print the form, complete it, and return it)

teachers in ECE deserve pay parity

A problem for education and care centres is that they are funded at a lower rate than 'free' kindergartens even though they must meet the same regulations for staffing and staff qualifications. The funding difference is unjust.

Home-based ECE is funded at a considerably lower rate again but it is still required to employ qualified and certificated teachers to oversee children's education and provide professional leadership to educators in homes.

All qualified and certificated teachers in ECE deserve to be paid as teachers and not have their kindness and love of their job and of children taken for granted. The low status of ECE will not change as long as those who teach our youngest children are paid less.  

Some services, such as those located on school grounds and with some shared governance, are able to provide pay parity to their teachers. However, they are not funded at the kindergarten rate and therefore don't get funding increases to help meet the costs of any increases to the unified base salary scale for trained teachers. This is unjust.

funding rate changes graph

All teacher-led centres used to receive salary component adjustments in funding to account for costs arising from the Kindergarten Teachers, Head Teachers and Senior Teachers’ Collective Employment Agreement (KTCA).  

However, from 2010/11, because it did not have the assurance that other services were paying salaries at KTCA level, the government decided it would pass the higher rates on only to kindergartens.

Since then the difference between kindergarten funding and that of other service types started to grow and it will continue to grow unless the funding bias is successfully challenged for all teacher-led services (and we see that this can include home-based) that employ qualified and certificated teachers.

We need to give the Minister of Education and the Ministry of Education the assurance they need that services will pass the salary component of any funding increase on to their teaching staff; assurance that teachers are being paid at the KTCA rates.  We are asking services to complete a form and return it to us. There are ethical early childhood services that care about their teachers and children, and we want to show that these services can be trusted to pass on funding increases to their teachers.

Click on "FORM" to get your copy of the form for ECE services to complete should they agree to undertake to pay all qualified and certificated teachers at pay parity rates
Email your completed form (page 2 only) to the ChildForum office asap. 


367 centres agree to provide pay parity for their qualified and certificated teachers when funded at the same rate as the education and care centres classified by the Ministry of Education as 'free kindergartens'

  • BestStart - 270 centres throughout NZ and 4,500 staff (Nation-wide and NZ's largest ECE provider)  
  • SEEDS Childcare Aoga Amata - 2 services (Porirua)
  • Back2Nature Childcare - 2 services (Northland)
  • Castle Kids Early Centre Ltd - 3 services (Waikanae, Kapiti Coast) 
  • Rosebank ECE Centre (Avondale, Auckland)
  • Rangitaiki Early Childhood Centre (Coastlands, Whakatane)
  • Rocket Kids Early Learning Centre (Avondale, Auckland)
  • First Years Early Learning Centre (Whanganui)
  • Akoranga Childcare Centre (Northcote, Auckland)
  • The Cottage Kindergarten Ltd (Waimauku)
  • Headstart Childcare and Early Education Ltd (Hobsonville, Auckland)
  • Maketu EduCare (Maketu)
  • Oma Rapeti ELC (Freemans Bay, Auckland)
  • Hadlow Preschool - Trinity Schools Trust Board (Masterton)
  • The Ole Schoolhouse (Rotorua)
  • St Margaret's Pre-school (Christchurch)
  • Whenuakite Country Kids (Whenuakite)
  • Marlborough St Childcare Centre (Upper Hutt)
  • Newlands Childcare Incorporated (Wellington)
  • Zero2Hero Ltd (Whangarei)
  • Cromwell Early Learning Centre (Cromwell)
  • Aubrey Early Learning Centre (Auckland)
  • Cambridge Rd Community Kindergarten Incorporated (Hamilton)
  • Kiwi Explorers Centre (Nelson)
  • Little Kiwi Explorers Centre (Nelson)
  • Blossoms Homebased Childcare (Blenheim)
  • Little Kiwis Learning Centre Ltd (Whanganui)
  • Islington Early Childhood Centre Incorporated (Dunedin)
  • Summerfield Early Learning Centre (Albany, Auckland)
  • The Rose Centre Community Preschool (Belmont, Auckland)
  • Avalon Childcare Centre (Hamilton)
  • Te Tirahou Childcare Centre (Hastings)
  • Antarctica Early Learning School (Hamilton)
  • Little Adventurers' Early Learning Centre (Porirua)
  • Pauanui Pre-School Incorporated (Pauanui)
  • A'oga Amata EFKS Newtown (Wellington)
  • Molyneux Educare Incorporated (Cromwell)
  • Little Minds Early Learning Centre (Te Awamutu) 
  • Phoenix Prechool Incorporated (Ashburton) 
  • Smart Start Preschool (Whangarei)
  • Mangere East Family Service Centre (Mangere, Auckland)
  • Discovery Early Learning Centre (Lower Hutt)
  • ACETitoki Early Learning Centre (Nelson)
  • ACENayland Early Learning Centre (Nelson)
  • AKO Rolleston (Canterbury)
  • Grow Early Education (Cambridge)
  • 4woods Early Learning Centre (Te Puke)
  • Kidiwise Early Learning Centre (Bethleham, Tauranga)
  • Educational Childcare Centre Inc (Christchurch) 
  • Grow Active Balfour Terrace (Christchurch)
  • Grow Active Welles St (Christchurch)
  • Launch Active Early Learning (Hastings)
  • Tiny Footsteps (Clive, Hawke's Bay)
  • Taupo Kids Community (Taupo)
  • Small is Beautiful Early Childhood Centre (Devonport, Auckland)
  • Gumboots and Grasshoppers Childcare & Learning (Hamilton)
  • Footprints Educare (Kaitaia)
  • Sugartree Lane Preschool (Auckland)
  • The Toy Maker's Cottage Preschool (Grey Lynn, Auckland)
  • Waitara & Districts Community Childcare Centre Inc (Waitara)
  • Wanaka Preschool (Wanaka)
  • Nga Rito o Te Puawaitanga Early Childhood Centre (Palmerston North)
  • Inspired Minds Early Learning Centre (Whangarei)
  • The Playhouse Pre-School @ 51 (Pukekohe)
  • The Playhouse Pre-School @ 41 (Pukekohe)
  • The Blue Cottage (Papamoa)
  • Peanuts Childcare (Whitianga)
  • St Mary's Tahatai Preschool (Papamoa)
  • Kauri Learners Early Education (Whitianga)
  • Little People Preschool Richmond (Nelson)
  • Little People Preschool Wakefield (Nelson)
  • St Mary's Family Centre (Mount Maunganui)
  • Whangarei Childcare Centre Inc (Whangarei)
  • Avalon Childcare Centre (Hamilton)
  • The Children's Corner Howick (Auckland)
  • The Children's Corner Papatoetoe (Auckland)
  • Caterton Preschool and Littlies (Caterton)
  • Kowhai Kids (Auckland)
  • Te Kuiti Community Childcare Centre Inc 'The Cottage' (Te Kuiti)
  • Te Rourou Whakatipuranga O Awarua (Bluff)
  • Morrinsville Kids Ltd (Morrisonville) 
  • Te Kōpere (Hastings)
  • Hundred Acre Preschool Inc (Whanganui)
  • Gracefield Early Childhood Centre Inc (Lower Hutt)
  • Capital City Preschool (Wellington)
  • Brilliant Minds Early Childhood Centre (Auckland)
  • Friends on Fraser Educare (Tauranga)
  • Lumsden Kindergaren (Hastings)
  • Cuddly Kiwis Childcare - 2 services Everglade Centre and Papatoetoe Centre(Auckland)
  • Taupo Children's Corner - 2 services (Taupo)


22 Home-based ECE Services also agree in exchange for funding at the Kindergarten rate to pay all their qualified and certificated ECE staff at the rates specified in the Kindergarten Teachers, Head Teachers and Senior Teachers' Collective Agreement 2019 - 2022

  • Dream Education - 10 services (Nation-wide)
  • Gingerbread Cottage - 2 services (Hamilton) 
  • Wonder Homebased ECE - 2 services (Auckland)
  • Kaliloa Home-based ECE - 3 services (Auckland)
  • Taulama Home-based ECE - 3 services (Auckland) 
  • Nurture@Home Education and Care (Nelson)
  • Multilingual Kids Home-Based Service (Auckland)


What else can you do? 

Ther is strong public support for pay parity

A more than 15,000 signature strong ECE Teacher Pay Parity Petition has just gone to Parliament. You can read more about what's happening and the signatories to the petition here 


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