ChildForum Office of Pre-Primary Education

ChildForum Office of Pre-Primary EducationInforms and works to raise standards in the ECE sector
Represents the sector
Research publisher (NZ-International Research in ECE Journal)
Supports the Parent and Whānau information service (
Find out more About Us


ECE Funding System Changes

© ChildForum

Government funding system changes look set to happen for the ECE sector and quite possibly before the next general election.  

Change started during National’s previous term with the deletion of the word ‘free’ from the 20 Hours Free ECE funding policy and removal of the top tier of funding for 100% qualified and registered teachers. The ECE Taskforce provided a smokescreen for the Government by giving the sector a sense of engagement and helping to prime people into accepting that Government desired to and would take much firmer control of increasing expenditure on ECE and reshape its investment in ECE.  

The ground has now been prepared by Government for tweaking major parts of the ECE system or possibly (though less likely) totally changing how it funds early childcare and education.   

Specifications for a tweaked or a new ECE funding system could be that it:

  1. is based on thorough research of effects, and underpinned by careful economic, social and educational policy analysis;
  2. is good or better for children than the current funding system;
  3. supports parents to spend time with their children and engage in effective parenting; and
  4. is in line with this government’s financial objectives ( i.e. to reduce the overall spending on ECE and institute tighter controls on expenditure).

Of the above specifications, indications so far are that meeting government’s financial objectives is the primary goal.

During June and July 2012 the Ministry of Education is running plans for funding changes past a small group of nine people, most of whom are lobbyists and/or ECE providers, to encourage buy-in and test for adverse reactions before implementation. The last thing Government probably wants is criticism that could turn ECE into a major election issue.

Limiting advice, input and feedback on funding changes to only nine people (and any employers and boards whom these people may report to) is not sufficient testing of acceptance by the whole of the ECE sector and unlikely to be sufficient for prior identification of any or all of the possible fish hooks and problems.

The Ministry of Education has responsibility to generate sound advice for the Minister of Education. Extensive policy analysis, through the production of policy papers, along with gaining information and insights from other early childhood systems and countries may be seen to be important for this. Any changes to the way Government funds ECE should be evidence-based and take into account possible and likely effects on children, other family members and parenting along with economic and social concerns such as parents’ labour force participation and the economic self-sufficiency of low-skilled parents and low-income households.


Don’t miss out any longer, click the button below to join ChildForum

Join Us!



Subscribe now for information you can trust, expert advice and research, as well as access to quality resources. 

We are confident you will be delighted to discover and experience the benefits of membership - so join now and make this message for non-members disappear from your screen. 

Membership Options


Who is this for?
Teachers, Eductors, Lecturers, Policy Advisors - any indivdual with an interest in ECE

$98.00 12 months from the date of joining
$60.00 6 months student-only

Choose your own personal username and password
(Note that this membership does not give access to specialist ECE Service members-only info and support) 

ECE Service Organisation

Who is this for?
Centres, home-based, hospital-based, playgroups ... established or newly licensed.

$198.00 12 months per standalone licensed service
Special rates for organisations with more than 1 licensed service

This membership gives access to professional & research materials enjoyed by individual members PLUS ECE service management area info and support. 

Library NZ-International Research
in ECE Journal Subscriber

Who is this for?
Universities, Polytechnics and organisations wishing to have online access to the NZ-Int Research in ECE journal (includes all past and current issues) 

$125.00 annual subscription, renewable in November each year

A username and password for your library users linked to your IP address.