Changes to Supervisor Certificates and the National Quality Framework begin 1 October. Sections of this website are in the process of being updated. For information about the changes, see:
Changes to the National Quality Framework
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a certified supervisor?
Certified supervisors are eligible to be appointed as the nominated supervisor of a service, or may consent to be placed in day-to-day charge of an education and care service in the absence of the approved provider or nominated supervisor (section 105).
How do I become a certified supervisor?
There are two ways to become a certified supervisor. You may either apply to the Department as an individual (individual certified supervisor certificate) or you may be nominated by the approved provider or nominated supervisor at your service (service certified supervisor certificate). Most people will use the service certified supervisor certificate option as it is easier and free of charge.
How do I use my service’s certified supervisor certificate?
To be covered by the service supervisor certificate a person needs to be:
a family day care co-ordinator; or
responsible for the day to day management of the service; or
exercising supervisory and leadership responsibilities for part of the service.
If a person meets one of the above criteria the approved provider may nominate that person to be a certified supervisor. Who meets the criteria will depend on the structure of the service but suitable people might be management staff, an area manager, centre director, second in charge (2IC) or room leader.
If the person accepts the nomination they must give their written consent. They are then a certified supervisor and may be placed in day to day charge of the service.
What does ‘responsible person’ mean? Who can be a responsible person?
A responsible person must be present at all times a centre-based service is educating and caring for children. A responsible person can be one of the following:
the approved provider or a person with management or control of the service if the approved provider is not an individual
the nominated supervisor of the service
a certified supervisor who has been placed in day to day charge of the service (section 162).
The approved provider of a family day care service must ensure at least one of the persons listed above is available to support a family day care educator. The support person may provide support face to face or by being available to be contacted by telephone at all times the family day educator is educating and caring for children as part of the service (section 164).
How many certified supervisors do I need at my service?
There is no prescribed number of certified supervisors. However, it is an offence under the National Law to operate an education and care service without a nominated supervisor (section 161). Whenever the nominated supervisor is absent from the service, a responsible person must be present at the service. The responsible person may be the approved provider, or a person with management or control of the service, or a certified supervisor who has been placed in day to day charge (section 162).
It’s a good idea to have a few certified supervisors so they can be available to be the responsible person if needed.
I’m a certified supervisor – am I in charge of the service now?
Once you are a certified supervisor the approved provider or nominated supervisor may designate you as the certified supervisor in day to day charge of the service. You can only be placed in day to day charge with your consent, which must be in writing. If you accept the designation you will be the responsible person (for centre-based services) or support person (for family day care services).
Depending on the structure of your service you might be the responsible person or support person most days or only when someone else is away.
Centre-based services must note on the staff record who the responsible person is at each time that children are being educated and cared for at the service.
What’s the difference between a service certified supervisor certificate and an individual certified supervisor certificate?
They both make you a certified supervisor and for the day to day running of the service it doesn’t matter which type of certificate you have.
If you are a certified supervisor using the service certified supervisor certificate then when you leave the service you will no longer be certified supervisor. If you start work at a new service you will have to be re-nominated and re-consent to the role in order to become a certified supervisor under the new service’s service certified supervisor certificate.
If you have an individual certified supervisor certificate and you leave your current service you will still be a certified supervisor and you won’t need to be re-nominated or re-consent to the role if you start work at a new service. However, to be placed in day to day charge of the service the approved provider or nominated supervisor will still need to designate you and if you decide to accept the role this must be done in writing. It is up to the approved provider at the new service whether they choose to designate you to be in day to day charge and you might not use your certified supervisor credentials.
What about a certified supervisor who relieves at a number of services?
Some approved providers use relief educators who are employed or engaged across all the approved provider’s services. In this case the service certified supervisor certificate can still be used but the relief educator must have a staff record available at each service complete with their written acceptance of the role of certified supervisor.
Who still needs to apply for an individual certified supervisor certificate?
The only people who should apply for an individual certified supervisor certificate are those who wish to be the nominated supervisor at a new service which has not yet been issued its service supervisor certificate. Upon service approval the service certified supervisor certificate will be issued and all subsequent certified supervisor nominees should use this.
Who can apply for an individual certified supervisor certificate?
To be granted an individual certified supervisor certificate a person must:
be 18 years or above (section 106)
demonstrate that they are a fit and proper person. For more information about determinations of fit and proper person by the Regulatory Authority, please see the fact sheet National Quality Framework: Certified and nominated supervisors available at Education and Care Services (section 108).
Certified supervisors of services primarily educating and caring for children preschool age or under must meet the following requirements:
adequate knowledge and understanding of the provision of education and care to children
the ability to effectively supervise and manage an education and care service
one of the following: 3 years experience or an approved diploma or early childhood qualification (regulation 47).
An applicant does not need to have 3 years experience or an approved diploma or early childhood qualification if they are a certified supervisor in an education and care service primarily educating and caring for children over preschool age (regulation 47).
Applications for supervisor certificates will be assessed by the Regulatory Authority. Application forms for certified supervisors are available on the Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) website. See:
What is the difference between a nominated supervisor and a certified supervisor?
All services must have a nominated supervisor (section 161). Nominated supervisors are responsible for the day-to-day management of an approved education and care service.As part of an application for service approval, an approved provider must identify the nominated supervisor for the service and provide evidence of that person’s consent to fill the role (section 44).
What if I don’t know who the representatives and nominees of my service are?
The representatives and nominees of the service are listed on the service licence on the Certificate of Names issued as part of your licence.
Is there any information that should be displayed in relation to certified supervisors?
For centre-based services, the National Law and the National Regulations require the name and position of the responsible person in charge of the education and care service at any given time to be displayed so that it is clearly visible to anyone from the main entrance to the education and care premises (regulation 173(2)(c)).
What records do I need to keep?
All approved providers must keep a record of certified supervisors placed in day to day charge (regulation 177(n)). Centre-based services must also note on the staff record who the responsible person is at each time that children are being educated and cared for at the service.
What do I need to tell the Department?
The approved provider must notify the Department if the approved provider is notified that:
a certified supervisor’s working with children check or teacher registration is suspended or cancelled; or
a certified supervisor is subject to disciplinary proceedings under an education law of any state or territory.
Who transitioned automatically to the National Quality Framework as a certified supervisor?
Under the National Law, primary nominees automatically transitioned to become the nominated supervisor of an approved education and care service (section 316) and approved nominees transitioned to become certified supervisors (section 315).