As a professional, you know that evidence shows high quality provision during the foundation years has a lasting impact on children’s outcomes, future learning and life chances.
Quality provision in early education and childcare is secured through a workforce which is confident in:
- Working together
- Engaging with mums, dads and families
- Understanding the importance of pedagogy and chid development
- Ensuring high expectations for children to realise the best outcomes
- Delivering high quality practice and teaching that make a difference on a daily basis to children’s outcomes.
Aiming for high quality
Quality improvement is all about ensuring that all settings and all professionals consider how best to create, maintain and improve provision in order to offer the highest quality learning and developing experiences for all children and their families. Children who experience high quality provision are well placed to achieve higher outcomes at school and develop better social, emotional and cognitive abilities necessary for life-long learning.
Poor quality provision does not support children’s learning and development in the long term.
Quality improvement is a continuous cycle based on planning; implementing; reviewing and analysing. It is a never ending journey involving children, parents and professionals.
The role of leadership
Leadership plays a significant role in quality improvement and leaders should have in place systems for self evaluation; identifying and agreeing improvement priorities; and plans to implement the priorities and review the difference the actions have made.
Supporting quality improvement
The National Quality Improvement Network has developed a set of key principles to support quality improvement.
Quality assurance schemes support quality improvement systems and provide recognition that an individual setting has made real progress against an agreed set of standards, achieving an accredited level.
Many organisations have developed their own quality assurance schemes – check with your sector lead or overarching provider to see if they have one.
Ofsted is the independent, non-ministerial government department responsible for inspecting and regulating early years provision and registered childcare.
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- NQIN – the National Quality Improvement Network
- Ofsted – the independent, non-ministerial government department responsible for inspecting and regulating early years provision and registered childcare
- National Strategies Early Years Quality Improvement Support Programme – guidance materials from National Strategies providing local authority early years consultants and leaders of early years settings with tools to support continuous quality improvement in line with the principles of the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework, drawing on Ofsted’s self evaluation form and the National Quality Improvement Network’s principles
- Reflecting on Quality (PSLA)
- E-Quality Counts (NDNA)
- Role of leadership in quality improvement – from 2010-12, the Pen Green Centre Research and Development Base ran a two-year project that established a national network of Early Years Teaching Centres run by outstanding children’s centres and nursery schools to train and support staff in other local early years settings.
- National College for Teaching and Leadership – works to develop and inspire great leaders of schools, early years settings and children’s services so that they can make a positive difference to children’s lives.
In your setting have all the staff discussed, debated and reached agreement as to what quality looks like for you?