There is concern from some early childcare teachers who say working conditions are like "factory farming children".
It comes in an independent survey of more than 600 teachers, many of whom are worried poor adult-to-child ratios are letting kids down.
The sentiment held by some early childhood teachers is they are overstretched, overworked and understaffed.
The survey, led by research network Child Forum, found 25 percent of early childhood teachers wouldn't enrol their own kids at the centre they work at. Seventeen percent say they don't have enough time to foster relationships with children, and 12 percent reported consistent under-staffing.
But the Early Childhood Council says the survey is alarmist.
"I think it's undermining teachers and it's undermining centres," says CEO Peter Reynolds.
Childcare centres are required to have one teacher for every 10 children and a ratio of one-to-five for under-two-year-olds.
The Ministry of Education says its early childhood education standards are among the highest in the world, and is urging any teachers with concerns about staffing levels at their centre to come forward.