Fredericksburg Parent

March 2018

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www.FredParent.NET 29 The Four Quality Standards Measured by Virginia Quality Virginia's Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS) awards quality levels to child care and preschool programs based on these four nationally recognized quality standards and best practices. EDUCATION AND QUALIFICATIONS A teacher's formal education in child development or early childhood education has an impact on children's school readiness. When teachers have some formal education, such as a Child Development Associate (CDA), professional certificate, or child-related college credits, they are more prepared to intentionally support children's learning through high quality interactions. CURRICULUM AND ASSESSMENT Intentional teaching has an impact on children's school readiness. This standard does not require programs to use a purchased curriculum. Instead, this standard measures how pro- grams intentionally promote children's learning and development. Virginia has developed the Milestones of Child Development and the Foundation Blocks for Early Learning to guide early childhood educators in promoting school readiness, and this standard considers how the pro- gram aligns with Virginia's early learning guidelines. ENVIRONMENT Children engaged in meaningful learning and play, guided by qualified caregivers in an enriched educational environment, has an impact on school readiness. This standard measures the types of materials available to the children and the types of activities they are involved in throughout the day. INTERACTIONS Interactions between teachers and children form the foundation for all social and cognitive learning, significantly impacting school readiness. In addition to exposure to high quality mate- rials and intentional teaching, children benefit most when they experience high quality interac- tions. At your program, do teachers • support children's social and emotional growth? • have a positive attitude towards the children? • use constructive behavior management techniques? • encourage children to learn and be creative? This standard measures the quality of interactions. TOP TEACHERS Kindercare's success in meeting the Level 4 requirements is also due to the quality and longevity of their teaching team in the infant room. To meet Virginia Quality Level Two, the director or administrator of the center must have earned an Associate degree in a relevant field with a minimum of 15 child-related credits OR has earned 24 child-related credits from an accredited college (or in progress)** and 50% of the Lead Teachers have 12 child-related credits from an accredited college OR a national Child Development Associate cre- dential (also known as a CDA) OR another approved credential, such as an American Montessori Society Credential (or in progress)** Even higher standards apply to Level Three. EIGHTEEN YEARS ON THE JOB What makes this particular teaching team stand out though, is their longevity. Six teachers are assigned to the room: Ms. Alisa, Ms. Marie, Ms. Andina, Ms. Harley, Ms. Michelle and Ms. Joyce. The team's length of service ranges from five to eighteen years. Two of the teachers are a mom and daughter team, and another, Ms. Alisa, previously worked as the center's director before returning to the class- room because, "it's the best job in the world." "You can really see the family feeling in this room," says Knapp. "I'm always impressed with how willing each of the teachers is to help the others, and how warm their interactions are." Bell agrees, "One of Kindercare's service values is creating a warm feeling between the teachers and families, so each family feels welcome and included here." continued on pg 31 Ms. Harley and Ms. Joyce in the puppet area. Ms Alysa and Ms. Andina play with a dinosaur. Ms. Marie and Ms. Michelle showing off an infant interaction area. Kindercare staff in the infant room from left to right: Ms. Michelle, Ms. Andina, Ms. Harley, Ms. Alysa, Ms. Joyce, and Ms. Marie.

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