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Family day care market engagement process to find new providers

Family day care in South Australia

Family day care educators operate their own business from their home, with the support of an approved family day care provider.

In South Australia the Department for Education is a major provider of family day care (FDC).

Market engagement

In 2019, the Department for Education commenced a market engagement process to explore options for a better way to support family day care educators and respite care program care providers.

Consultation with industry was undertaken to determine interest in the market for a transfer of family day care and respite care services to reputable agencies or organisations.

Approach to market

The outcome of the market engagement process was that sufficient market interest exists for a transfer of family day care and respite care services to a non-government provider.

The department has commenced an approach to market process to begin this transfer.

Throughout the approach to market process, the department will focus on making sure there is ongoing continuity and growth in family day care and respite care services, and that safety standards and service quality are maintained.

Any transfer would bring South Australia into line with other states and territories across Australia, where there are a large number of smaller providers including councils, non-government organisations and small private providers that are able to provide services which are community focused and clustered around a small geographic area.

The department acknowledges that family day care and respite care services are highly valued by the community and it remains committed to the continuity of these services in this state.

Since the initial market engagement process, the department ‘retested’ industry to understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on providers and to assess the best time to proceed.

We have now reconfirmed with industry providers that there is still an acceptable level of interest to support the transfer of the department’s family day care and respite care services.

This completes stage 1 of the approach to market process.

There will be no change to the way services are delivered, or how families access family day and respite care services.

Questions can be emailed to education.fdcATM@sa.gov.au.

Family day care and respite care services will operate the same way

Family day care and respite care services will continue to operate normally across South Australia during the approach to market process.

Family day care educators

During the approach to market process, there will be no immediate impact on educators’ businesses. Current arrangements with the department as the approved provider will continue. Families can continue their current care arrangements. Educators will continue to be part of the same scheme.

FDC Educators must continue to comply with the requirements of the National Quality Framework.

Educators and care providers will continue to be monitored and supported by our qualified staff working at a local level who interact with the children, educators and families.

Respite care program care providers

During the approach to market process, there will be no immediate impact on care providers’ businesses. Current arrangements with the department as the registered National Disability Insurance Scheme provider will continue. Families can continue their current arrangements.

Care providers must continue to comply with the requirements of the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

Family day care

Emaileducation.fdcATM [at] sa.gov.au