IT'S a quarterly snapshot used to provide comparison of childcare operators across the nation, but is it fair?
The Australian Children's Education and Care Quality Authority's National Quarterly Framework is released every three months, providing a "point in time" analysis of how childcare services are tracking.
Regulatory authorities in each state and territory are responsible for assessing and rating services and organising the service assessments.
The data for the National Quality Framework snapshot is taken from a national register which is updated weekly, meaning some services ranked as working towards national quality standards may have outdated ratings in the snapshot even if they'd since fixed their issues, been re-assessed and improved their ratings.
There are also some services facing lengthy gaps between assessments and re-assessments.
Noosa Child Care and Preschool has been waiting for about 18 months to be re-assessed.
It was ranked working towards national quality standards after its first assessment when the new rating system was rolled out.
Director Patrice Vaughan said they'd received excellent rankings each assessment under the previous system and admitted it had been frustrating to be ranked working towards and be left waiting for re-assessment.
She was loathe to criticise the assessors though, saying they did a great job under the pressure of trying to get around the entire state.
"The people that work for them (Department of Education) are great," Ms Vaughan said.
"They're doing the best they can with the time they've got.
"It is a bit unfortunate (the delay)."
She said she expected her service to be at least meeting national quality standards when partially re-assessed in the next six months, given they were found to be exceeding national standards on all but two points to do with documentation, which has since been addressed and improved.
Ms Vaughan also expected their overall rating to rise at their next full re-assessment, about three years after their partial re-assessment which she hoped would be early next year.
"There's a lot of really good things about the system," Ms Vaughan said.
"It will take a little while to iron out a few wrinkles (in the new assessment system)."
Queensland Department of Education and Training's deputy director-general, early childhood and community engagement Gabrielle Sinclair explained services did have the option to seek re-ratings.
"Once a service has received a quality rating, it can request a re-assessment and re-rating. Under the Education and Care Services National Regulations, services can only apply for reassessment and re-rating once every two years," Ms Sinclair said.
Each service that receives a final rating report has two weeks to apply for a review of the rating, once that 14 days has passed the rating is published on the national register.
Assessments and ratings processes are carried out on a daily basis around the state as part of a regular cycle and within these cycles services can request re-assessment and re-rating.
Goodstart Early Learning Eimeo, in Mackay, is one example of a centre originally rated as working towards national quality standards in the quarterly snapshot, but has since been updated to meeting national quality standards on the weekly register, yet remains as working towards in the snapshot data.
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