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Early Childhood Alert No. 2, 2018

In this newsletter 

  1. Early education services coping well with the hot weather
  2. More funding for many services
  3. Sun shade planning and considerations for ECE services
  4. Chinese New Year ideas for ECE 
  5. How long records need to be kept by an ECE service
  6. Recording accidents and injuries - electronically or with a duplicate book
  7. Induction and mentoring of new teachers
  8. Student scholarships
  9. Staffing at the beginning and end of the day and person responsible requirements
  10. Research: Children's visual art experiences
  11. Research: Professional learning in gifted and talented education 

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1. Coping with the hot weather

Early childhood services have adjusted well to the blistering heat that has been gripping most of the country, even though services in NZ are not generally built to keep children and adults cool under heat wave conditions.

ChildForum has received a few reports of centres with inadequate outdoor sun shade and centres with sleep rooms that have become stifling, with ambient temperatures of more than 26 degrees. The sleep rooms can accommodate as many as 15 and even up to 40 babies, are not air-conditioned, have fewer windows than what most homes would have, and windows that only partially open. 

This is concerning but it is also encouraging to see how early childhood services and teachers are responding to the hot weather and implementing lots of good strategies to keep everyone safe and reduce stress:

> Learn more about what services are doing, ideas for keeping cool, factors that affect how hot a child feels, signs to look out for

   

2. More money for many services

On the 1st February the Ministry of Education is to inform services eligible for additional funding what they will be getting. Payments will be made in instalments at the usual 3 funding time points (1 March, July, November)

> Learn more details about this, go to:  News story

 

3. Sun shade planning outdoors

What you need to know about improving natural shade and using manufactured shade cloth etc outdoors in an early childhood service.

Service owner and manager article

 

4. Chinese New Year ideas for ECE

Go to article

 

5. How long records need to be kept by an ECE service 

Information to help you know what to keep and when and what to throw out/ safely destroy 

Record retention checklist and dates 

  

6. Best accident and injury registrars to get

It is recommended that early childhood services use and adopt for their own the accident and investigation template provided by Worksafe. Have it on your computer/ tablets for teachers to record electronically.

Or if you want paper copy then from a stationary shop get the Collins A4 Accident Injury Investigation Register Book NCR Duplicate. It includes an injury/incident and investigation flowchart that helps you develop controls, define trends and find ways to prevent similar events from happening. The core of the book contains an Accident Form and Investigation Form (used in conjunction with the Accident Form). No carbon is required and pages easily tear off. 

See also

ECE daily hazard checklist

ECE electrical safety checklist

Supervision best practices for teachers and educators 

Serious food-related choking incidents and how to reduce the risk of a child choking in ECE

SIDS and infant sleep practices and policies for centres and Home-based ECE 

Keeping children safe and one educator's story of support in home-based ECE

Baby-proof your home - a guide for parents, caregivers and educators 

 

7. Induction and mentoring of new teachers

High quality guidance and information to make sure you are on the right track

Go to teacher article

  

8. Student scholarships

Applications for ECE training scholarships with TeachNZ close on 23rd Feb 2018

Applications for Men in ECE scholarships are open - applications can be made to ChildForum or find out more from EC-Menz

>  ECE scholarship information

 

9. Staffing at the beginning and end of the day and person responsible requirements

The information provided in this article answers the following questions:

  • Does there need to be a minimum amount of staff at the centre? Our centre closes at 5.30 pm. We usually only have two children left at that time of the day. Is it legally OK to only have one staff member at this time or do the regulations require two staff members?
  • Is it okay for a teacher who is on their last year of training to be acting as a supervisor e.g. being left in charge without a qualified or certificated teacher and supervising unqualified staff and also doing openings and closings?
  • When our certificated ECE teacher is on leave because we only have one other teacher who is trained and she is primary trained, our centre manager says she is the person responsible. Can a primary trained teacher be in charge of an early childhood centre?
  • Could you advise if only qualified teachers are legally allowed to be responsible for opening and closings at a centre please. The person responsible clause under the ECE Regulations states they should be recognised as being qualified; is this correct?

 >  Go to the full ECE service manager article and read more

 

10. Research: Children's visual art experiences

What teachers think and how they evaluate children's art is more likely to be accurate when children’s actions and narratives are considered.

> Go to our journal article by Julie Plows (University of Auckland)

 

11. Research: Access to professional learning in gifted and talented education

Initial teacher education programmes in New Zealand have little to no content relating to gifted education. This lack of opportunity to strengthen gifted practice is further exacerbated by the lack of funding available from the Ministry of Education. The lack of gifted education provision lies in contradiction to the expectations that early childhood educators be sufficiently knowledgeable about the unique needs learners and ways to be responsive to these. The authors argue that professional learning is necessary to support gifted learners and sustained improved practice, not just short term gains.

> Read more in our NZ-Int Research in ECE journal article by Vanessa White and Tracy Riley

 

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