Quality Improvement Plan 16-17 School Year

Spark! Discovery Preschool staff members and the School Accountability Committee (SAC) are excited to inform you of our 2016-2017 Quality Improvement areas, which have been designed through collaborative processes over the last half year.  These plans are based on a Colorado Department of Education initiative, called Colorado Shines.

Colorado Shines is a quality rating and improvement system (on a scaled of 1 to 5) used to assess, improve, and communicate the level of quality in early care and education programs. This system assigns a quality rating to licensed early care and education programs, similar to rating systems for other service-related industries like hotels and restaurants. Colorado Shines, Colorado’s quality rating and improvement system, is require for licensed childcare and preschool providers supporting children prior to entering kindergarten and helps early learning programs offer high-quality care and preschool.  It supports and offers resources to preschools so they may support each child’s learning and development.  Research shows this kind of assistance helps providers improve the quality of their programs, and when more young children are ready for school, we all benefit. Here are a few facts:

●       At level 1, licensed childcare programs must meet Colorado’s licensing requirements for health and safety.

●       Programs with higher ratings have strong classroom instruction, training for staff, and family engagement to support children’s success.

●       Participants who are working on or who have been rated Level 2 are recognized as “Participating in Quality Improvement.” This is our current rating, as we started this process in January 2016.

●       Childcare programs rated at Levels 3, 4, or 5 are recognized as having achieved “High Quality.”

●       We will be reevaluated this school year and will be receiving a rating based on the following criteria:

○ Workforce Qualifications and Professional Development

○ Leadership, Management, and Administration

○ Learning Environment

○ Family Partnerships

○ Child Health

What follows is information about steps we will take to improve the quality of programming at Spark.  Many of these actions are already in place, but we’ve included them so you know them.

The following are steps we will take in the area of Workforce Qualifications and Professional Development:

●       100% of preschool and childcare staff will meet the requirements of the Professional Development/Information System and receive a credential from the Colorado Department of Ed

●       Develop a professional development plan which is informed by staff evaluations and individual professional development plans

The following are steps we will take in the area of Leadership, Management, and Administration:

●       Share the Quality Improvement Plan with staff, families, and stakeholders

●       Train staff on the written code of conduct

●       Staff will be reviewed annually, to include classroom observation and self-evaluation of staff

●       School staff will complete a staff survey indicating they participate in at least monthly staff meetings and that they participate in decision-making (such as hiring, goal setting, curriculum development, etc.

  • Update our current strategic plan

The following are steps we will take in the area of Learning Environments:

●       Curriculum is aligned with the Colorado Early Learning and Developmental Guidelines

●       On-going program documentation indicates the program’s curriculum addresses the Colorado Early Learning and Developmental Guidelines

●       Policies and practices for continuity of care are a part of the program

●       Assessment results are used to individualize the curriculum

●       Staff members are trained in adopted curriculum

●       Make improvements in the learning environment using the Early Childhood Environmental Rating Scale, which we conducted in the spring of 2016

The following are steps we will take in the area of Family Partnerships:

●       Create a written policies for the use of interpreters for help with other languages of enrolled families, which describe how transitions are supported, and procedures for referring and connecting families to community-service agencies

●       Provide materials and resources for community-based programs

●       Along with the Parent-Teacher Organization, offer a variety of opportunities for families to get to know one another and to work together for the benefit of the children in the program

●       Conduct an annual survey and use the result to increase quality of the program

●       Offer informational sessions for parents on child development and learning

●       Offer parenting classes, which include family goal setting and action planning

●       Provide opportunities for families to act in leadership positions

●       Conduct documented parent/teacher conferences twice a year

●       Coordinate and collaborate with service providers, families, and our school district to design programming for students with special needs, as well as Individual Learning Plans for all children

The following are steps we will take in the area of Child Health:

●       Document that each child has received a hearing, vision, and dental screening.

●       Document each child’s medical check-up in order to complete a health appraisal form

●       Conduct and document that each child has medical insurance and a medical home (primary care in non-emergency situations)

●       Conduct a certified playground inspection

●       Lead children in structured physical activities each day

●       Offer nutrition information and education programs

●       Provide resources for families on where to obtain the screenings for vision, dental, and medical

●       Increase opportunities for on-site gardening

We look forward to working with you in a partnership to increase the quality of programming at Spark! Discovery Preschool.  It takes all of us working interdependently to assist preschoolers to be ready for kindergarten. Should you have any questions, please talk to your child’s teacher or feel free to give me a call at 720-652-7906.