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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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Reflective questions:

In your setting have all the staff discussed, debated and reached agreement as to what quality looks like for you?