Update 21 October 2021

21 October 2021

Auckland and Waikato remain in Alert level 3. The Waikato Alert Level settings will be reviewed at the end of this week. 

Auckland will stay at Alert Level 3 Step 1 with no change to the restrictions in place, with a review to happen on Monday 1 November.

Northland is now in Alert level 2. Welcome back to our Playcentres in this area. We hope you are enjoying being back onsite.

For a refresher on the requirements at Alert level 2 please click here.


Playcentre Aotearoa, as a quality early childhood education provider, supports the Government’s mandate for vaccination to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all children and extended whānau at Playcentre. The vaccination mandate is a very important tool we have to safeguard any vulnerable children, parents, staff, or their whānau members from COVID being passed on in a Playcentre setting. We encourage you to get vaccinated for the protection of those who are vulnerable in the community. If you are nervous or undecided about the vaccine, please go and speak to your GP or trusted health provider.

The Public Health Order on testing was published last Friday but this largely does not apply to Playcentre as we are not open at Alert Level 3. The Ministry of Education have advised that they are waiting on the Public Health Order vaccination section to be published before providing clarification on the issues Playcentre has raised.

We are looking forward to receiving clarification on these questions particularly:

  • The final date that staff and volunteers can be onsite until if they are not vaccinated. There has been conflicting information provided regarding this, so we look forward to providing further certainty on this when we are able to;
  • Further clarification on Playcentre playgroups;
  • Our infant programme requirements; and
  • External hireage.

It has been heartwarming to see all of the images coming through this week from those of you who are back at centre at Level 2. Please continue to support each other with kindness and manaakitanga during these uncertain times.

The Ministry of Education has provided clarification on the following questions:

If parents are unvaccinated, does that automatically exclude their children too? The mandatory vaccination and testing requirements do not apply to children. Parents/caregivers do not need to be vaccinated to drop off, settle or pick up their children.

The options of regularly testing and salvia testing? We do not have information about saliva testing at this time, but will share information as soon as it comes available in a future bulletin.

Please continue to provide feedback through our feedback form below.

COVID-19 related feedback form

This is a particularly stressful time for staff who may have their employment at Playcentre affected by this mandate.  We ask that you refrain from questioning them directly about their vaccination status at this time – it is up to them if they wish to volunteer that information.  Any questions regarding staffing of your centre should be directed to your Centre Advisor or Regional Support Lead.

Here are a range of resources available for those who are anxious about the vaccine.


  • Talking to vaccine hesitant people – an article on the World Health Organization website, also available in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, Portuguese and Spanish

B401 and B404 Modules via Webinar

Exciting news – in Term 4 Playcentre Education is trialling webinar-style modules for B401 Kia Tākaro | Let’s Play and B404 Te Kākano: Te Reo me ona Tikanga Māori!  These workshops will be delivered via Microsoft Teams and will be aimed at ākonga (learners) who would like to connect with other ākonga and tutors in a real-time virtual learning space – 5 two hour workshops. Priority will be given to ākonga currently in Level 3 areas or with travel/health barriers making it difficult to attend face-to-face workshops.  Booking details will be on the Online Modules section of the Playcentre website from next week. https://www.playcentre.org.nz/current-members/find-a-workshop/

Online modules via iQualify

The cut off for the final intake for 2021 online modules via iQualify (self-paced online study) is the end of Tues 26 Oct.  Modules available:

  • B401, B402, B403, C405 Part A, C405 Part B, C406, C407 and C410 will start 1 Nov.
  • Module C409 (the last module) is by invitation only once other modules are completed and will start 15 Nov.

The first intakes for 2022 start 1 Feb.  Current students will need to enrol in modules by 26 Jan and new students by 16 Dec.


Playcentre Education Kawerongo/Newsletter

All currently enrolled students should have received an Playcentre Education Kawerongo this week.  Some email addresses bounced back.  If you are currently enrolled and did not receive it, please first check your junk email folder and if it’s not there, email Louise Albert (Education Lead) [email protected] so that we can check your details and get a copy to you.

We have been successful in once again getting $160,000 in funding from the Lottery National Community Fund. The feedback was that it was a strong application, however there was an increase in those applying so the amount we got was unable to increase.

Our Grants Administrator, Tonya Bristow, is currently reviewing each of the 170 centres that applied for number of sessions open, funds in the bank, children enrolled, location to other funding options (rural/urban) and consulting with Centre Advisors to ensure that the most vulnerable centres out of the 170 that applied get the support they need.

We would like to make a special shout out to Herne Bay Playcentre who chose to withdraw their application so that our vulnerable centres can remain open, and we thank them for doing this.

Next Tuesday (26 October) we are recognising and honouring those with silver in their hair and gold in their hearts.

We have created a range of resources and templates that you can use whether you are at home or at Playcentre to recognise that special Tupuna Wāhine or Tupuna Tāne in your life.

Grandparents Day resources