Before and after school care

There are many options for before and after school care in New Zealand, as well as great programmes for children during the holidays.

In New Zealand, children under the age of 14 must not be left alone without reasonable care and supervision. Parents should not drop children off at school before the school has opened in the morning (usually at 8:30am), or leave them there after school has finished.

Before school care (7:30-8.30 am) and after school care (3:00-5.00 pm) is usually available from either private or community childcare providers. They usually also offer holiday programmes that run during business hours throughout the school holidays.

After school sports in New Zealand

Ask your school about the options that may be available.

Your child's safety

The Ministry of Social Development (MSD) is able to certify programmes as safe. You should check with the provider to see if their programme is certified.


There are fees for before and after school care programmes. Check the fees with the provider.

Providers that are part of the government’s OSCAR (Out of School Care and Recreation) scheme receive funding that can subsidise the cost.

Parents who are New Zealand residents or citizens can also get help with the costs of before and after school care through the OSCAR scheme. There is more information on the government’s Work and Income website .

OSCAR Subsidy | Work and Income

OSCAR accreditation standard

OSCAR sector web portal 

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