Get to know the Quality Practice and Regulatory Support team

Delivering resources and guidance, the team supports early childhood education and care (ECEC) services to be the best they can be across all aspects of their daily operations.

A group of happy, smiling people stand in front of a white paneled wall. A leafy plant is in the positioned to the right of the group. A group of happy, smiling people stand in front of a white paneled wall. A leafy plant is in the positioned to the right of the group.
Image: QPRS draws on sector feedback and data to develop and deliver evidence-based programs that support quality and regulatory improvement.

The Quality Practice and Regulatory Support (QPRS) team, within the NSW ECEC Regulatory Authority, is dedicated to helping the sector translate the National Quality Framework into safe and effective everyday practice.

QPRS is made up of individuals from diverse backgrounds, including the broader human services sector, along with former ECEC professionals and authorised officers. Its team members are solutions focused, self-proclaimed data lovers and, most importantly, passionate about drawing on their vast experience to support services’ regulatory compliance and quality uplift.

Evidence-driven initiatives

As QPRS Manager Louisa Coussens explained, there are a range of factors that inform what programs the team delivers and how they deliver them.

“In the regulatory authority, we are lucky enough to have a wonderful source of data in our national system, NQA IT System,” explained Louisa." This lets us see a broad picture of what the sector would like our help with.”

“We also seek insights directly from the sector through formal consultations, and we listen to what you tell us during conversations at our ECE Connect events and enquiries we receive.”

Regulatory changes and priorities or certain events that might lead to heightened risks in services, such as natural disasters, may also inform the team’s offerings.

The team then develops evidence-based programs and educational tools, which are free of charge and accessible to everyone, to help address challenges faced by the sector.

Driving quality practice

QPRS is behind some of the work you may have previously engaged with, such as ECE Connect sessions on safe sleep and rest, the Family Day Care PD in Your Pocket program or the department’s emergency preparedness guides and templates for ECEC services.

To ensure these resources follow best practice guidance and are tailored, engaging and relevant to different needs and service types, the team work closely with key stakeholders.

For example, QPRS collaborates with Red Nose, the nationally recognised authority on safe sleep, to ensure resources and advice align with current research and evidence-based guidelines. The team also works with Kids and Traffic to promote safe transportation best practice and the Office of the Children’s Guardian to deliver guidance relating to child safety.

Most recently, the team partnered with Phoenix Support for Educators to deliver a suite of resources to help educators better understand and support children’s behaviours. Educators in NSW can now access the free, self-paced professional learning program, including a podcast series, delivered by experts in the field until 31 December 2025.

Like services, QPRS is also on a continuous improvement journey. “One way that QPRS ensures quality practice is by evaluating valuable data sets,” Louisa shared. “We also take on sector feedback received from consultations and experiences when using our resources.”

“We use this information to drive our own continuous improvement, making sure we are delivering the right kind of support in the right way.”

Positive outcomes

In early 2023, QPRS became aware of a rising number of children consuming food items they were known to be allergic to at ECEC services where meals are prepared and served. After engaging with services and NSW Health’s Anaphylaxis Education Program – and understanding the challenges the ECEC sector experience – the team developed a tool to help minimise allergy and anaphylaxis risks during mealtimes.

The result? The Meal Checkpoint Resource, which was launched in July 2023. Designed to change behaviour, the practical tool ensures a two-person check occurs before serving meals to children diagnosed with allergy and/or anaphylaxis. Louisa reported that the tool has received excellent feedback from services that have started using this resource as part of their mealtime routines.

What’s next?

QPRS is constantly exploring new opportunities to support the sector. Resources to support the implementation of the Child Safe Standards, regulatory workshops for educators and so much more are all under development, shared Louisa.

“We are currently exploring exciting new learning opportunities that will help our sector to access our information quickly and easily,” she added. “Stay tuned!”

Recently, the team delivered 4 ECE Connect sessions, including webinars on emergency management and exploring risk in ECEC settings. Don’t worry if you missed the webinars – they’ll soon be available the ECE Connect series webpage to watch on demand.


Check out some of our Safety and Quality Practice Program initiatives.

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