Childcare closures by the Department - basic information
As many of you would know lots of childcare services are being closed by the Department of Education (DET).
Below is a summary of key information
The DET may establish a breach of Family Assistance Law or any other regulations/laws has occurred in a number of ways including:
During spot checks or accreditation
In a wide spread crackdown with investigations focusing on dodgy childcare operators
In particular childcare subsidy (CCS) claims are being analyzed in order prevent further fraudulent activities being committed by organizations and individuals including parents, who have already stolen billions from the tax payer.
If the DET finds any wrong doing they will issue a sanction or suspension of some sort as well as an end result
The DET will notify a service of what the outcome of their investigation is - notice of the sanction together with the grounds and evidence plus the result:
There are 3 main outcomes a service could be issued due to a breach of Family Assistance Law or any other regulations/laws:
Sanction – Cancellation (closure in x amount of time )
Sanction - Conditions (imposition of condition(s) on service)
Immediate Suspension (immediate closure)
The above is usually in relation to the following: provider approval, service approval and or supervisor certificate. Cancellation of CCS approval may also occur.
The nature of enforcement or the result varies depending on each case. There could be:
Amendment of Service Approval (imposition of condition(s) on service)
Compliance notice (closure)
Cancellation of provider approval (closure) or
Prosecution (in addition to closure) amongst others
Unless there has been an immediate suspension or similar circumstance, generally a show cause notice will be issued to provide a reasonable explanation as to why action should not be taken or should be deferred. If the reasons are not accepted all further options usually involve court proceedings.
A service can ask for a review however before a review is completed the result of the investigation may have come into effect.
The DET has very strict standards.
Whilst overturning their decisions is statistically unlikely, engaging lawyers remains the best the course of action for those who wish to do so.
The DET are pursuing all types of childcare services including:
Centre Based Day Care (Long Day Care and Occasional Care)
Family Day Care
Outside School Hours Care
In Home Care.
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