The PA Key website includes tools for providers who have received ERS reports and would like to use the information in the reports to improve quality child care practices.
Imagine, you and your staff have just gotten through your ERS assessment window. There was probably a big sigh of relief from the entire staff. It is a somewhat intimidating process where a significant amount of time was spent preparing. All that work and about a month later you hear from your Quality Coach with the scores.
If scores were met, you get a huge CONGRATULATIONS!!! Your hard work paid off and you are providing an increased level of quality care to the children and families enrolled in your program.
Whether scores were met or not for the STAR level, the scores are more than just a few numbers. Those scores and the Environment Rating Scales can be used to further increase the quality of care provided and/or help to move to a higher STAR level.
You have the scores, now what?
A Quality Coach can help. Or you can go to the PA KEYS website and download a Self/Team Reflection Tool.
The Self/Team Reflection Tool is a 2- or 3-page form that may be used to help look at current practices. Quality improvement should be a team approach. It really does take the entire staff to improve the quality of care at your center. After you receive scores use a team approach to look at the scores and decide where to go next.
The Self/Team Reflection Tool is a way to look at what is being done well! Yes, the ERS reports can show what you are doing well. Don’t skip over the scores of 5, 6 or 7. And don’t forget to read the Areas of Effectiveness. Take pride in what you and your staff are doing well with children. You work hard every day and there are many reasons to be proud. Please take the time to look at those positive things and congratulate yourselves. The Self/Team Refection Tools include a few questions about what impressed you about your current practices. Take pride in your accomplishments!
The Self/Team Reflection Tools also give some questions for discussion about three specific items the team can decided to begin improvement. Quality improvement may seem like a rather large commitment, but if the decision is on just three items to work on, it might not seem so big.
The Self/Team Reflection Tool gives a way to record what has been discussed. It provides a way to put in writing those three items the team decided will be the focus. The form includes places to record the team leader for each item, resources needed to improve that item, a place to record the plan of action and guidance for reviewing the effectiveness.
Include the improvement plan as an item for each monthly staff meeting. This is a great way to include the entire staff in the plan and keep the entire staff up to date on the progress. Share the plan with your Quality Coach so your coach can help the staff stay on track and provide resources where needed.
The Self/Team Reflection Tool is a great way to dissect ERS reports, take pride in areas of effectiveness and plan a path for quality improvement.