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102108| LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT

LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT


REPORT
Nancy Khuu

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ABSTRACT
A well-conceived and strategic managerial plan can provide stability and continuity for a
service (Kearns, 2007). This report aims to explore and discuss the different roles of
stakeholders within the child care and education sector. In addition to this, roles and
responsibilities of managerial members of community-based services will also be look at and
defined. The report also aims to provide an overview of Quality Area 2 of the National
Quality Framework (Childrens Health and Safety) and analyse the policy document of
Goodstart Early Learning centre in accordance to the legal requirements and regulations of
the National Quality Framework. Finally, the report will conclude with some
recommendations for the improvement of Goodstarts policy and how they can better meet
outcomes presented in the Early Years Learning Framework.

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INTRODUCTION
A services success can be largely attributed to its management, and the leadership qualities
of the members who run it. A well-conceived and strategic managerial plan can provide
stability and continuity for a service, particularly in a community-based service where the
turnover in the management committee members is annual (Kearns, 2007). Sciarra and
Dorsey (2002) highlight two main themes in defining management; 1. The involvement of
staff as well as of the leader, and 2. The essential element of change (p. 6). Child care and
education services must adhere to National Regulation and Legislation in order to operate
lawfully. One of the most important documents within the child care and education world, the
National Quality Standard (ACECQA), guides educators through many regulations and
legislation relevant to the sector. This report aims to look at the early childhood care and
education sector through the lenses of the leadership and management teams within child care
and education services, and how they integrate legislation, policy and regulations in their
service and their daily curricula. Firstly provided will be an overview of the roles and
responsibilities of key stakeholders in education and care services the Approved Provider,
Nominated Supervisor, and Educational Leader. Then, a brief view of community-based
leadership and management. Finally, an analysis of how this particular education and care
service addresses the legal requirements for Quality Area 2 Childrens Health and Safety, of
the National Quality Framework.

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Overview of the roles and responsibilities of key


stakeholders
Approved Provider
A childcare and education service must hold a nationally recognised Provider Approval and
also a Service Approval in order for the service to operate lawfully. An education and care
service also cannot operate unless it is operated by an Approved Provider. Depending on the
structure of the education or care service, an Approved Provider can be an individual or entity
(such as a company, an association, or a partnership) who holds a Provider Approval granted
under the Children (Education and Care Services National Law Application) Act 2010. This
approval gives authorisation to the Approved Provider to operate an approved education and
care service (Bryant & Gibbs, 2013). It is part of the Approved Providers overall
responsibility to pay an annual fee for the services Service Approval, and also to ensure that
a service adheres to and complies with the National Laws and Regulations. These legal
obligations include ensuring childrens health and wellbeing (including protecting them from
ham and hazards), proving a services lawfulness by providing the correct documentation of
approval, establishing and documenting a required program at the service which reflects the
appropriate framework, and ensuring that the service meets the minimum staffing
requirements which include correct ratios and qualifications and the presence of a Nominate
Supervisor and/or responsible person. Other responsibilities of the Approved Provider include
setting up clear systems of communication for management and staff, have regular
involvement with the service, and organise professional development for themselves and
other staff at the service (Bryant & Gibbs, 2013).

Nominated Supervisor
The Nominated Supervisor is responsible for the basic matters of a service which strives to
offer quality education and care for children (Bryant & Gibbs, 2013). It is an ongoing
obligation that all services must have a Nominated Supervisor, and it is part of the Approved
Provider to nominate such as person. The Nominated Supervisor can be the Approved
Provider of that service given they have obtained a Supervisor Certificate, otherwise, another
consenting individual holding a Supervisor Certificate may be employed the fill the role. A
major responsibility of the Nominated Supervisor includes putting in place educational
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programs which are based on and delivered according to an approved early learning
framework (such as Belonging, Being and Becoming or; My Time, Our Place) which are
catered to the childrens individual developmental needs, interests and experiences. The
Nominated Supervisor is also responsible for the safety and supervision of the children (3.2a;
Children (Education and Care Services National Law Application) Act 2010. This includes:
ensuring children are adequately supervised and are protected from harm and hazards, and
monitoring who enters and leaves the premises. A Nominated Supervisor retains the role until
he or she withdraws their consent to the nominations or their employment at the service ends.
(ACECQA).
Educational Leader
The Educational Leader is defined by Bryant and Gibbs (2013) as: A person with suitable
experience and qualifications appointed as an Educational Leader to lead the development
and implementation of the educational program (or curriculum) in the education care service
(p. 318). A suitable educational leader must be designated I writing by the Approved Provider
as by regulation 118 of the Education and Care Service National Regulations (ACECQA).
The Educational Leader acts as a collegiate, guide and mentor in the service, and their role is
to inspire, motivate, challenge and extend the practice and pedagogy of the educators at the
centre. It is also important that the Educational Leader fosters a culture of positive and
constructive reflection within the service, in accordance to element 3.2.b in the Children
(Education and Care Services National Law Application) Act 2010. According to the
National Quality Framework, Quality Area 7 (Leadership and Service Management), the
Educational Leader is required to ensure the development of a curriculum which establishes
clear goals and expectations for teaching and learning. The Educational Leader should be led
by a strong vision and should put practices and curricula in place based on their extensive
knowledge on childhood developmental theories (NQS, 2012)

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Community Based Management


The development of community-based child care and education services has been
fundamental in Australias rich history of education and care provision services (Bryant &
Gibbs, 2013). The governance structure of a community-based child education and care
service is primarily made up of a management committee which derives its members from the
local community, and a Director/Nominated Supervisor who is elected and employed by the
committee to carry out tasks such as the implementation of policies and procedures of the
(Bryant & Gibbs, 2013). As it is a community-based centre, members of the management
committee may come from the local community and may be elected at a meeting of people
who use the service (i.e. Annual General Meeting). The roles of management, supported by
Robbins et al (2009) are: planning (defining goals and strategies), organising (determining
what and how tasks are to be done), leading (motivating, guiding and influencing other team
members), and controlling (monitoring performance and reflection in terms of meeting the
National Quality Standards). These roles should be put in place and properly fulfilled to
ensure good governance of a service.

Within the management committee is a board of executive members including the president,
vice-president, secretary and treasurer, who are primarily responsible for providing leadership
and vision building to the service. These members may meet more frequently than once a
month as they have a more involved role in the day-to-day curriculum of the service
(Kennedy, 2004). In addition to this, members of the management committee need to ensure
that they are providing the necessary support to the director by providing clear and consistent
policies and guidelines (Bryant & Gibbs, 2013). By contrast, the Directors role is to make
sure that the services policies are implemented, make decisions about the day-to-day
operation of the service, and have a solid understanding about the limits and skills of all staff
to ensure the delegation of tasks is appropriate and effective. While both the management
committee and Director are involved in the running of a service, it should be made clear that
the Director does not employ members of the management committee, but rather carries out
decisions and directives made by the management committee (Bryant & Gibbs, 2013).
Overall, both the Director and management committee should ensure that the roles of
management are being properly carried out.
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Overview of Quality Area 2 Childrens Health


and Safety
In terms of childrens health and safety at the service, there are a number of items within the
national legislation which educators and staff members should be well aware of. According to
the National Quality Framework, there are three main standards under Childrens Health and
Safety. These are: Standard 2.1: Each childs health is promoted, Standard 2.2: Healthy eating
and physical activity are embedded in the program for children, and Standard 2.3: Each child
is protected (Metcalfe, 2011). Regulations 77, 78, 79, and 80 in the Education and Care
National Regulation pertain to health, hygiene and safe food practices and are put in place to
satisfy Standard 2.1 and Standard 2.2. In summary, these articles regulate the way in which
child care and education services must ensure that all staff members implement safe food
handling and adequate health and hygiene practices. In addition to being safe and healthy in
food handling, educators and other staff members must ensure that there is safe and
accessible drinking water at all the time, and also ensure that the childrens dietary
requirements are met (Regulations 78 & 79, Metcalfe, 2011). All food and beverage provided
by the centre must also be accurately depicted in a weekly menu provided by the service
which is accessible to all stakeholders of the service (Regulation 80, Metcalfe, 2011).
Quality Area 2 of the National Quality Framework also states that each child is to be
protected (ACECQA). Educators and other staff members of the service must ensure that a
child is kept out of harms way at all times, and if the unfortunate were to happen, that these
incidents are documented and reported to parents or other significant persons. Regulations 82,
83 and 84 pertain to child protection law, and state that the environment should be free from
any non-prescription drugs such as alcohol or tobacco. This includes the fact that staff
members cannot be affected by alcohol or drugs while caring for children. Furthermore,
protection of the child entails providing them with the necessary first aid either as
preventative measures, or as treatment. Therefore, the service should always have items such
as inhalers, Epipens and other allergy-related medications accompanied by the appropriate
action plans, and updated first-aid kits available and accessible to educators in the service.
Finally, as part of ensuring the safety of the children, each centre must have clear,
unobstructed emergency and evacuation procedures which are drilled regularly (Regulation
97, Metcalfe, 2011).
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Quality Area 2: Goodstart Early Learning Policies and Procedures


The following table shows the policies put in place by Goodstart Early Learning and how
they meet legal requirements:

Goodstart keep ongoing


communication to children and
families to ensure that each childs
health requirements are met. These
include dietary, health and sleep
requirements which are fundamental

Standard 2.1
Each childs health is promoted

to childrens wellbeing.
Children at Goodstart centres are
encouraged to be responsible for their
health and physical wellbeing by
educators who model and reinforce
health, nutrition and personal hygiene
practices. This aids in the
maintenance of high standards of
hygiene and limits the spread of

infectious diseases.
Goodstart follows the Early Years
Learning Framework when creating
and promoting opportunities for

Standard 2.2

children to experience healthy foods

Healthy eating and physical activity are

and good food choices,


Staff at Goodstart make sure to

embedded in the program for children.

implement physical activities in the


daily routine and experiences which
extend and enhance childrens fitness
and gross motor skills.
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Adequate supervision is provided to


the children at Goodstart centres and
staff are aware of and seek to
minimise potential risks and hazards
which may cause injury or harm the

Standard 2.3
Each child is protected

children.
Goodstart staff are expected to have
completed their child protection and
understand their legal and ethical
obligations to act in the face of child
protection.

Information in this table is taken from Goodstarts NQS2 Childrens Health and Safety Policy Statement, 2015

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Recommendations
While Goodstarts policy outlines a range of strategies and procedures to satisfy legal
requirements, there are some points which may have been overlooked in their policy
document for Quality Area 2. An improvement can be made in their approach of Standard 2.1
(Each childs health is promoted) by stating that the centre will provide religiously and
dietary sensitive foods to children in need of such. This can add to the centres strategies for
inclusive practices by ensuring that children who need special food due to religious or allergy
reasons feel like they belong. This therefore will meet the requirements Outcome 1 and 2 of
the EYLF (DEEWR, 2009). Another recommendation includes reassuring readers that the
centres evacuation and emergency procedures are clearly documented and visible to children
and staff at the centre, and that these procedures are regularly drilled to ensure smooth
emergency procedures in the unlikely event of a real emergency. A third suggestion involves
Child Protection; as well as being aware of potential harms and risks to the children, staff
members should also ensure that they do not unintentionally become the risk by working
under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

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REFERENCES

ACECQA (2013) Guide to the national quality standard, September 2013.


http://files.acecqa.gov.au/files/National-Quality-Framework-Resources-Kit/NQF03-

Guide-to-NQS-130902.pdf [Retrieved April 1st, 2016]


Bryant, L., & Gibbs, L. (2013). A director's manual: Managing an early education

and care service in NSW. Sydney, Australia: Community Childcare Co-operative.


Children (Education and Care Services National Law Application) Act 2010
Department of Education, Employment and Work Place Relations. (2009). Belonging,
being and becoming: The early years learning framework for Australia. Canberra,
Australia: Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and

Workplace Relations
Kearns, K. (2007). Manage an organisation. In The business of childcare (pp. 1-77).
Sydney, Australia: Pearson.
Kennedy, G. (2004) I dont know what to do about our management committee. A
guide to establishing and maintaining effective management committees in early
childhood services. Childrens Services Management Series. Community Child Care

Co-operative Ltd.
Metcalfe, S. (2011) Education and Care Services National Regulations under the
Education and Care Services National Law. Ministerial Council for Education, Early

Childhood Development and Youth Affairs, 9 December 2011.


National Quality Standard Professional Learning Program, e-Newsletter No. 33,

2012)
National Quality Standard Professional Learning Program (2012). e-Newsletter, No.

33, 2012.
NQS2 Childrens Health and Safety Policy Statement. Goodstart Early Learning, 2015

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Robbins, S., Bergman, R., Stagg, I., & Coulter, M. (2009). Introduction to
organisations and management. In Foundations of management (3rd ed., pp. 1-37).

Frenchs Forest, Australia: Pearson Education.


Sciarra, D., & Dorsey, A. (2002). Understanding the leader's roles. In Leaders and
supervisors in child care programs (pp. 3-26). Albany, NY: Delmar.

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