Starting Strong IV

Monitoring Quality in Early Childhood Education and Care

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Research suggests that, when it comes to early childhood education and care, quality matters most. A growing number of countries are establishing monitoring systems to ensure quality and accountability in these programmes. This new publication explores how countries can develop and use these systems to enhance service and staff quality for the benefit of child development. It offers an international perspective and concrete examples to help policy makers, monitoring experts and practitioners in the field develop their own monitoring policies and practices.

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Monitoring staff quality in early childhood education and care (ECEC)

Staff quality is monitored by all the jurisdictions surveyed, mostly through inspections and self-evaluations. Inspections focus on staff qualifications, the overall quality of care and teaching, process quality, as well as planning skills. Observations, interviews, analysis of internal documentation and the results of self-evaluations are often used in inspecting staff quality. Peer reviews focus on the overall pedagogical quality, curriculum implementation, process quality and teamwork between colleagues. Self-evaluations make use of self-reported surveys and self-reflection reports, focusing on communication skills, while parent surveys ask about child development, as well as communication between staff and parents. The frequency of monitoring staff quality is often decided at local or setting level and is dependent on the last monitoring result in most jurisdictions.Countries monitor staff quality to inform policy making, improve staff performance, enhance quality and determine staff training needs. The benefits of monitoring include better-trained staff, staff who are more highly qualified, and better descriptions of responsibilities for different staff grades in ECEC.

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