What are the indicators of high quality child care?
Several research studies have found that high quality child care programs have certain characteristics in common. These characteristics can help parents make better child care choices for their children because they indicate a much greater likelihood of high quality care. Quality indicators measure the conditions that generally foster a safe, nurturing and stimulating environment for children. They are:
- Low child/teacher ratios
- Small group size
- Staff with higher education & on-going training
- Prior experience and education of the director
- Low teacher turnover
- Positive teacher/child interactions
- Accreditation or higher than minimum licensing standards
- Age appropriate activities
- Good health & safety practices
Low ratios and low turnover allow teachers to respond to the individual needs of children, to give each child ample attention and to create a strong bond, adding to the child’s security. Higher education helps staff and directors understand the needs and development of young children, which helps teachers plan activities for children and interact with them in developmentally appropriate ways. Well-compensated teachers with good benefits change jobs with less frequency, lowering turnover and increasing opportunities for children to create attachments and build relationships. Finally, child care programs with a national accreditation or higher-than-minimum license demonstrate an intent to provide high quality care and have met higher-than-minimum standards to receive the accreditation or license.
When you visit a child care program, use one of the child care checklists below to determine how many quality indicators the program has. If you can answer yes to most or all of the questions on the checklist, your child will have a greater chance of having a successful child care experience.
Essay on The Benefits of High Quality Child Care
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It is common knowledge that a parent is considered the most efficient caregiver for their children. It’s also known that with daily responsibilities of caring for a child financially, parents partake in full-time and/or part-time employment. While needing to do so, many children attend daycare/preschool facilities. Granted, it is the parent’s responsibility to cautiously select where they decide to take their children. This is because parents know that while they are away for numerous hours of the day, their children are in the hands of another care provider and that their care would have an enormous impact on their children. At a young age, a child’s social and cognitive skills are continuing to take shape and the amount of time spent in…show more content…
While daycare/ childcare centers provide a safe haven for young children and left in the care of licensed caregivers, there is more to daycare then just temporary relief for parents. These facilities offer a nurturing and fun learning environment to promote curiosity, innovation, and continuous growth in developmental abilities and positivity in children, and they also have the ability to provide encouraging and engaging activities that endorse emotional, social, and academic development (Phillips 1987). Within these facilities, high quality care calls for each child reach greater levels of learning and can develop skills at their own pace under supervision.
Along with knowing the purpose of quality daycare/child care facilities, the next important factor is to be aware of what generates a high quality daycare/child care facility. It is vital to know the characteristics because these prime objectives are the driving forces influenced by what children need in order to succeed and grow in their developmental skills. Fundamentally, “High quality [preschool] education can support early development in ways that yield long term social, cognitive and emotional benefits” (Barnett 2005, p1). The most essential aspect of a high quality facility are the trained, certified and attentive teachers hired to support children’s developmental needs. They ensure this by respectful interaction,