Educator to child ratios

This page is current as of 1 October 2017.

Educator to child ratios for Victorian centre-based education and care services, and funded kindergarten programs.

Educator to child ratio requirements are determined by the age and number of children being educated and cared for by the service at any one time.To be included in the ratio, the Educator must be working directly with children. This is:

  • any educator that is physically present, and
  • directly involved in providing education and care to the children.

ON THIS PAGE

Ratios by age group

0 to 35 months

Ratio: 1 educator to 4 children

Educator qualification requirements:

at least 50 per cent of required educators must have (or be enrolled in and studying towards) an approved diploma level qualification.

All other required educators must:

  • have (or be enrolled in and studying towards) an approved certificate III level (or above) qualification, and
  • have completed and passed their 3 month probabtionary period.
36 to preschool age

Ratio: 1 educator to 11 children

Educator qualification requirements:

At least 50 per cent of required educators must have (or be enrolled in and studying towards) an approved diploma level (or above) qualification.

All other required educators must:

  • have (or be enrolled in and studying towards) an approved certificate III level (or above) qualification, and
  • have completed and passed their 3 month probabtionary period.
Above preschool age

Ratio: 1 educator to 15 children

Educator qualification requirements:

At least 50 per cent of required educators must have (or be enrolled in and studying towards) an approved diploma level qualification which meets Victorian requirements for working with children over preschool age.

All other required educators must:

  • have (or be enrolled in and studying towards) an approved certificate III level (or above) qualification which meets Victorian requirements for working with children over preschool age, or
  • enrol in that qualification no more than 6 months after commencing work with children.

Mixed age groups

Where there is a mix of children from all three specified age groups, you may wish to calculate the educator to child ratios by including the older age groups as part of the ratios for children in younger age groups.

The online Mixed Age Group Ratios calculator for is available at: Fact sheets and resources

Calculating the ratio

The following examples will help you to calculate the ratios required at your service.

Example 1:

Total number of children: 49

Of these 49 children:

  • 16 are in the age group 0 - 35 months, and require 4 educators to meet the ratio of 1 educator to 4 children
  • 33 are in the age group 36 months - preschool age, and require 3 educators to meet the ratio of 1 educator to 11 children

Total number of required educators: 7

Qualification requirements:

  • 4 of these educators must have (or be actively working towards) an approved diploma level (minimum) qualification, and
  • 3 of these educators must have (or are actively working towards) an approved certificate III level (minimum) qualification.

N.B. All educators must meet the Victorian qualification requirements for working with children preschool age or under. An early childhood teacher can be considered in meeting the diploma level qualification requirements.

Example 2:

Total number of children: 56

Of these 56 children:

  • 11 are in the age group 36 months - preschool age, and require 1 educators to meet the ratio of 1 educator to 11 children
  • 45 are in the age group over preschool age, and require 3 educators to meet the ratio of 1 educator to 15 children

Total number of required educators: 4

Qualification requirements:

  • 1 of these educators must have (or be actively working towards) an approved diploma level (minimum) qualification that meets the Victorian requirements for working with children preschool age or under, and
  • 1 of these educators must have (or be actively working towards) an approved diploma level (minimum) qualification that meets the Victorian requirements for working with children over preschool age, and
  • 2of these educators must have (or are actively working towards) an approved certificate III level (minimum) qualification.

NB: An early childhood teacher can be considered in meeting the diploma level qualification requirements.

Record keeping

All centre-based services are required to have a record of educators working directly with children.

This helps services to meet the required educator-to-child-ratios. It also ensures that children are being appropriately supervised at all times.

A staff roster, timesheet or alternative must be used to capture the required information. The record must contain:

  • the name of each educator who works directly with children
  • the number of hours they work directly with the children at the service
  • the number of hours they are not directly working with children, including:
    • rostered breaks (such as lunch breaks)
    • if an educator is completing duties such as program planning
    • completing cleaning or food preparation duties.

The record does not need to include short brakes such as:

  • going to the toilet
  • answering a phone call
  • briefly talking to a parent
  • checking paperwork etc.

Early childhood teachers

Requirements under the National Regulations

For the purposes of the Education and Care Services National Regulations 2011 (National Regulations), early childhood teachers are not required to be counted in the educator to child ratios, however an early childhood teacher can be considered in meeting the diploma level qualification requirement if working directly with children.

For more information about the early childhood teacher requirements under the National Regulations, see: Early childhood teacher – centre based services

Early childhood teachers in funded kindergarten programs

For more information about the early childhood teacher requirements for funded kindergarten programs, see: Early childhood teacher requirements for funded kindergarten programs