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Professional childcarer-child ratio

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO

If you run a childcare organisation in the Netherlands, you must bear in mind the professional childcarer-child ratio (i.e. the ratio of the number of carers to the number of children present in the childcare organisation).

The childcarer-child ratio depends on the group's age range and varies according to the type of childcare provided: day nursery/crèche, out-of-school care, childminding or playgroup.

Calculating the professional childcarer-child ratio

You can use a calculation toolExternal link (in Dutch) to easily calculate the number of professionals you need. As of 1 January 2019, that the number of children per childcare professional has changed. In baby groups, 1 childcare professional can look after a maximum of 3 children (previously this number was 4) and in after-school care groups (aged 7-12) 1 childcare professional can be put in charge of 12 (rather than 10) children. The Municipal Health Service (GGD) will use the calculation tool during its quality inspections. TraineesExternal link (in Dutch) can make up to a third of the numbers in the childcarer-child ratio in consultation with their college supervisors (in Dutch).

Volunteer workers can no longer be used to make up numbers in the Childcarer-child ratio, although they are allowed to play a role in childcare provision.

Three-hour rule

If your childcare organisation is open for at least 10 consecutive hours, you are allowed to deviate from the professional childcarer-child ratio for three hours. The ratio is never allowed to drop below 50%. The number of hours may vary on different days. However, you must lay down in your pedagogical policy plan the number of hours you deviate from the ratio and on what days. Failure to do so means you may not implement the rule. Parents must be informed about how your organisation implements the three-hour rule.

Professional childcarer-child ratio during outings

There are no special rules for the professional childcarer-child ratio during outings. The childcarer-child ratio is the same as for childcare on location.

Four-eyes principle

You must adhere to the four-eyes principle. This means that at all times at least two adults should be present with a child. The adult may be another professional childcarer, but could, for example, also be a parent or trainee. You must request advice from the parents' committee with regard to interpretation of the four-eyes principle, and you must inform parents in this regard. Find out more about the four-eyes principleExternal link (Klachtenloket Kinderopvang, in Dutch).

This article is related to:

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO