- Viktoria Konstantinova
Key features of Work Practice Organization
- Evaluate your workplace in the context of its legal status and size in relation to both the Irish economy and world economy
I have been on work experience in a community crèche in disadvantage area since January 2014 until the place closed down and unfortunately I couldn’t get their policy and procedures. Therefore I will be evaluating my previous work experience from Level 5.
The Child Care Act 1991 is one of the most important and comprehensive piece of legislation, in relation to the care of children. And everyone who is working with children have a legal obligation to adhere to this Legislation and every childcare setting is required to keep a copy of it at their premises and staff should consult and be familiar with roles and responsibilities stated in the Act. Child’s rights are the first Standard in Siolta’s Guidelines and my workplace implements it by offering children choices and uses their interest and initiative to participate in their own development and learning. Another example of promoting children’s rights is that it is now written in the Irish constitution after Referendum on children’s rights were held thanks to UNCRC (United Nation Convention on the Rights of the Child) which is ratified by most countries, except USA, Somalia, South Sudan
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The setting is privately owned and is located in a big house that was refurbished into a childcare according to all necessary Regulations that are required by law and stated in the Pre-School Regulations 2006. These Regulations provide for health, welfare and development of the children 0 – 6 years. As part of Pre-school regulations 2006 individuals working with children must be qualified to minimum requirement FETAC level 5 Major Award in childcare and Garda Vetted to fulfil their responsibilities to protect children in their care. ”The new ECCE scheme directly pays pre-schools to provide a place for one year per child between the ages of 3 years 3 months and 4 years 6 months at September 1st each year. A higher rate is available as an incentive to encourage graduates with a relevant third level degree in early childhood to work in the sector” ( Neylon, 2012:2). Services that operate free pre-school year are required to implement Siolta principles and Aistear Curriculum along with notification to HSE to run the service, Tax Clearance Certificate, Staff Ratios (“For each group of 16 children in a full day care setting there must be at least 1 Pre-school leader who meets the qualification requirements outlined above (i.e. minimum FETAC Level 5 or equivalent)” (www.dcya.gov.ie)
My work experience has both pieces of legislation on the premises and is available to read for everyone staff and the parents along with inspection compliance forms.
|Regulations||Department of Children and Youth Affairs
Private sector is regulated by the State
|Ministry of Education and Science
Local level by the
Private Sector is not regulated and very small
Private Sector is not regulated
|Staff Training and Qualifications||Minimum FETAC Level 5 Major Award in Childcare||Three-year Degree||No national agreement
types of professional training available,
Kinderpflegerinnen (nursery auxiliary
workers) and Sozialpadagoginnen (social
|Pay/Wages||FETAC qualified between €9 and €14 per hour
Level 7 qualification is between €9 and €16 per hour
|€3,068 monthly||€ 24,032 per year avarage|
Most European countries now provide free universal admission to Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) services for children aged three to six. They usually provide subsidies for children aged less than three and children of school age. Ireland only provides free preschool year for specific age group from 3 years 2 months – less 4 years 7months on 1st of September of the year that they are starting. A lot of countries provide long maternity leave for mothers and fathers (Sweden) usually until child is entitled to free education which helps both parents to participate in employment, therefore beneficial to economy.
- Examine the workplace’s organizational structure, mission statement and values
Their services aims and objectives are to provide a service that is based on the needs of the families and children as well as the staff. Like for children: an environment which meets nutrition, health and safety requirements, supports and strengthens family ties, and which reflects the socioeconomic, cultural and ethnic background of its users, which accounts for the additional needs of children (There is a large collection of age appropriate toys and equipment which will ensure that your child’s developmental needs are met. The equipment is kept at a level which ensures that your child, as an individual can choose to play with what he/she wishes to. Rooms are bright and spacious with separate sleep room) Adults who respect them as individuals, and foster their unique abilities (physical, intellectual, social and emotional), background and ethnic identities, a curriculum that is consistent yet flexible to reflect children’s interest and encompassing gender equality (room staff are carefully chosen based on a special affinity they have with children of specific age group. They ensure that your child receives constant attention with variety of curriculums according to their age). For families: Supports them in providing an environment which promotes the holistic developmental needs of their children, respects and responds to the needs, values and cultural diversity of the parents (having an active exchange of information between parents and staff on a daily basis by sending home a sheet to let you know what your child has been doing during the day. For staff: goal as a staff team is to facilitate an open and effective working relationship whereby the practitioners are supportive and respectful of one another’s needs (Conducting staff meetings and appraisals on a regular basis and provide learning opportunities both internal and external).
Crèches mission states that their aim is to treat your child as an individual who will receive the very best care and attention that we can provide in a safe, loving, caring and stimulating environment. Setting has a strong commitment to provide a progressive and consistently high quality child care service where the needs of both the children and the families are met. As dedicated Early Childhood Professionals, they believe that children are unique individuals who learn and develop skills through the process of exploration within an educational, play-based curriculum. Our service continues to offer care and activities for children with additional needs. The crèche caters for children from 3 months – 12 years. It’s privately owned crèche and consists of a baby room (3months – 1.5 years), wobbler/toddler room (1.5 years – 3 years), Hi scope room for senior toddlers (3 year – 4 years), Montessori Pre-School (4 – 5 years), Afterschool (5 – 12 years).
|Manager||Bachelor of Arts (Honours) Early Childhood Education NQF Level 8|
|Assistant Manager||Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Early Childhood Care and Education NQF Level 8|
|Baby Room Leader||FETAC Level 6 ECCE Supervision|
|Wobbler/Toddler Room Leader||FETAC Level 6 ECCE Supervision|
|Pre-School/Montessori Room Leader||Bachelor of Arts in Montessori Education programme NQF Level 8|
|Hi-Scope Room Leader||FETAC Level 6 ECCE Supervision|
|Afterschool Room Leader||FETAC Level 6 ECCE Supervision|
|Baby room Staff||Childcare assistant FETAC Level 5 ECCE|
|Wobbler/Toddler Staff ×5||Childcare assistant FETAC Level 5 ECCE|
|Pre-School/Montessori Staff×3||FETAC Level 6 + Montessori Diploma|
|Afterschool staff×2||FETAC Level 5 ECCE|
|School Bus driver||Full Clean Driving licence, Garda Vetting|
- Assess the workplace culture and management practices of your ECCE setting based on your experience
My work placement setting is a crèche and Montessori, and offers after school care, ECCE scheme, CETS scheme and full and part time places, sessional Hi-scope classes and is privately owned.
Overall values and culture of my work experience is very family oriented, and management practices support parents, children and staff members. The setting has family like environment with a lot of siblings attending a crèche. The management constantly obtains an open door policy allowing parents to either drop off or collect their children at any time. Parents do not take an active role in policy changes, however, management do welcome at any time any suggestions parents might have to change policies as they are always trying to improve our service. Communication between owner and the parent is usually through an email or one to one meetings. Owner and Management are very involved in the crèche life and not only sit in the office, they also working and participate in the activities and outings with children (on one occasion owner came down with her car to bring some of the children that didn’t fit on the bus to the farm). Everyone in the setting follow policy and procedures, especially on outings and on the school runs.
Regular meetings held by the owner and the staff on a monthly basis, and small staff meetings held by manager with room leaders and childcare assistants weekly. Staff are communicating with parents face to face and through little notes that they record what the children did on everyday basis. Relationships and working atmosphere is very friendly and pleasant because owner recognises the complex and fluid nature of the work of the staff in the Centre. And provides staff with on-going and diverse training (Siolta training, they have recently received full Siolta Verification) that will offer them an opportunity to further their skills. Owner and Management believe that this kind of training commitment will lead to the highest possible standard of care for the young people in the Centre and to the development of greater job satisfaction and professional progression for all the staff. And for this reason staff feel valued and motivated in their work.
Childhood Care and Education 1990–2004” [Online] available at: http://www.cecde.ie/english/pdf/conference_papers/WalshQoQ.pdf last accessed on 1.07.2014
Centre for Early Childhood Development & Education (2014) “Germany” [Online] available at: http://www.cecde.ie/english/pdf/Making%20Connections/MC%20Chapter%206.pdf last accessed on 1.07.2014
Department of Children and Youth Affairs,2011 “ECCE Programme Guide to the Programme and the Administrative Procedures – for Service Providers and Parents” [Online] available at: http://www.dcya.gov.ie/viewdoc.asp?fn=/documents/childcare/GuidetotheProgrammeAdministrativeProceduresforServiceProvidersandParents.htm last accessed 1.07.2014
Department of Education and Science, 2009, “Developing the workforce in the early childhood care and education sector Background discussion paper” [Online] available at: http://www.education.ie/en/Schools-Colleges/Information/Early-Years/eye_background_discussion_paper.pdf last accessed on 1.07.2014
Early Childhood Ireland, 2012, “Salary Survey 2012” http://www.earlychildhoodireland.ie/advocacy-research-and-campaigns/research/surveys/salary-survey-2012/
Irish Times.(2011) ”Nordic childcare model best for economic and social wellbeing”. Irish Times: Ireland [Online], Available at:http://cmi.mannadev.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/Nordic-Childcare-best-for-economic-and-social-wellbeing-Irish-Times-9.6.11.pdf last accessed on 2.07.04
National Women’s Council of Ireland. 2005. “Accessible childcare” [Online] available at: http://www.dit.ie/cser/media/ditcser/images/accessible-childcare.pdf last accessed on 2.07.04
Neylon G., 2012, “An Analysis of the Free Pre-School Year in Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) scheme – from a Practitioner’s Perspective” [Online], available at: http://icep.ie/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/icep12_submission_19.pdf last accessed on 1.07.2014
Salary Explorer, 2014, [online], available at: http://www.salaryexplorer.com/average-salary.php?loc=81&loctype=1&job=699&jobtype=3&show=job last accessed on 1.07.2014
Statistic Sweden, 2014, “Wage and salary structures and employment in the primary municipalities” [Online] available at: http://www.scb.se/en_/Finding-statistics/Statistics-by-subject-area/Labour-market/Wages-salaries-and-labour-costs/Wage-and-salary-structures-and-employment-in-the-primary-municipalities/Aktuell-Pong/7634/2012/28336/ last accessed on 2.07.04
Policy and Procedure from the creche 2014
Walsh T., (2004) “Quality: A Global Issue? An International Review of Quality in Early