5 top ways to support your team of childcare practitioners
Having a robust and passionate team of childcare practitioners is highly important as it can contribute to delivering outstanding practice. It is important that it is not taken for granted the hard work that practitioners bring to the workforce and nursery managers should always find the time to show their appreciation. Practitioners who are passionate and proud of what they do can help create a strong team that works extremely hard delivering high standards of care and education. Running a child care setting isn’t an easy job, and there are always challenges along the way; however, nursery managers need to ensure practitioners are fully supported in their role.
Here are 5 top ways to support childcare practitioners
- Regular supervisions
Being consistent in conducting supervisions can help support practitioners in their job. It gives practitioners the opportunity to talk about concerns, get feedback on their practice and to look at further training opportunities. Supervisions don’t have to be a lengthy meeting; they are as long as they need to be. These worthy meetings can help practitioners feel appreciated and can show that management recognises the work that practitioners do on a daily basis. Failing to conduct supervisions can often be a reason why some childcare practitioners feel that they are not fully supported and Ofsted is very keen to see that regular supervisors are being carried out. Supervisions can be carried out by heads of rooms, therefore giving nursery managers more time to concentrate on other aspects of running an effective childcare setting. However, it is highly important that heads of rooms communicate with the nursery manager and share points discussed.
2.Asking practitioners for their input on staff meeting
It can be very easy for nursery managers to set the agenda for a staff meeting when in fact asking practitioner for their input can be more beneficial. Listening to your team can help show that they feel appreciated and supported. If practitioners are giving more responsibility, it can help managers delegate tasks, leading to more jobs being finished. Gathering practitioner views can give a wider picture of what is happening in the nursery as it is the practitioners who are working directly in the nursery ensuring children are reaching their full potential. If something isn’t quite working having input from practitioners can help find a solution for the issue. So when it comes to setting the agenda for your next staff meeting don’t forget to ask your childcare practitioners if there is anything they would like to discuss.
3.Spending time in the rooms
As we all know there sometimes isn’t a spare few minutes during a busy day in the office, and many managers can often get frustrated that they haven’t achieved much doing the day. However it is important that managers find just 5 to 10 minutes a day to pop into the rooms too;
- Find out what is going on
- Talk to practitioners
- Role model best practice
- Show their support and gain respect
The above points are just some of the reasons why nursery managers should spend time in the rooms. Being a nursery managers that regular visits their team can help develop effective leadership and managers skills as well as giving support and gaining that all important respect.
4.Finding time at the end of day to talk to practitioners
At the end of a busy day all you want to do is close your laptop and venture off home, however before leaving finding 5 minutes to talk to practitioners about their day as this can show practitioners that management is supportive. Most childcare practitioners fully appreciate their manager finding time in their busy day to talk to them, again this will create respect between both parties.
It is important that practitioners regularly update their continuous professional development, this is for numerous reasons one being that it keeps them updated with any changes that are made to the EYFS. Communicating with a practitioner about training can help identify their training needs and shows that their nursery manager supports them in continually updating their training. Keeping a record of practitioners individual training is paramount, using a training matrix is an accessible and useful tool that shows all practitioners training in one place.