ECE Service Providers to Pay for Staff First-Aid Course Costs

injuried childFrom 8 April 2021, centres must have one adult present that holds a current first-aid qualification (or suitable equivalent) for every 25 children attending. Currently the legal requirement is 1 first-aid trained adult for every 50 children.

The Ministry of Education will shortly give money to each centre to help to cover the costs of first-aid training for extra first aid qualified adults as required by the amended criteria plus one additional adult. 

Service providers will be expected to pass this money either directly to staff or pay first-aid course registration fees. This expectation has not existed previously with the Ministry of Education making no payment to service providers for staff first-aid training.

Nevertheless it is common for employers to meet the costs of first-aid training for their staff because having staff who are appropriately first-aid qualified is a licensing requirement.  Our ECE Employment Survey in 2020 of 4,021 teaching staff found that 87% had their first-aid training paid for by their employer.  

While the Ministry states that the payment it is making to service providers is a one-off payment only, it opens a door in future to service providers asking the Ministry to continue to fund the costs of first-aid training for staff.  

The Table below shows the amounts the ministry is paying according to centre licence size.

Licensed Places

Additional First Aid Qualified Staff required

MoE payment to Service Provider




















Unit standards that meet the Ministry of Education requirements of a first-aid qualification for staff working in centres are:

  • 6401 – Provide first aid, and
  • 6402 – Provide resuscitation level 2.

The ministry recommends that staff also complete unit 6400, which teaches how to manage first aid in emergency situations.

The NZ Red Cross offers a range of course options that meet the Ministry of Education requirements.  NZ Red Course also offers special rates for group courses for 10 or more people at your centre, on a day at a time that suits you.  Find out more by going to the NZ Red Cross page

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