Leaders play an important role in early education. Studies show that leadership can positively impact on the quality of the centre as a workplace, the quality of the education provided and the developmental outcomes achieved by children over time. A strong leadership team made up of a Service Manager, perhaps a 2IC and an Educational Leader will ensure the happiness, success and wellbeing of all the people, including the little people, who learn, work at play within an Early Learning centre.
In this article, we outline the important role the Educational Leader plays.
Every Sesame Lane Centre has an appointed Educational Leader to support and empower Early Childhood Educators and Teachers to improve their practice and audit their progress. In doing so, they help to ensure that Educators are providing quality education and care to children. Educational Leaders also provide a sounding board for new ideas and help Educators to reflect on their practice. As a result, they play a vital role in ensuring that educators are able to provide the best possible environment for children to grow and thrive. The importance of educational leadership is reflected in Quality Area 7 of the National Quality Standard (NQS).
Our Educational Leaders are selected from Educators who have proven skills, knowledge and attributes such as communication and interpersonal skills, comprehensive knowledge of theory relating to childhood education and care professional standards and approved learning frameworks and contemporary understanding of evidence-based best practice approaches to teaching and learning, a willingness to mentor and support educators from diverse backgrounds and with varying levels of knowledge and experience and of course a commitment to learning and participating in professional learning opportunities for the team.
One of the wonderful things about having an Educational Leader is that they help our Educators to set achievable goals and then equip them with the tools that they need in order to reach those goals. They also provide ongoing support and encouragement as they work towards their goals. A good Educational Leader will also give honest feedback about the teams progress and growth.
Another benefit of having an Educational Leader is that they can offer Educators objective perspectives on issues that they might be professionally struggling with. Sometimes it can be difficult to see things clearly when we are too close to the situation. An Educational Leader can offer helpful insights and observations that we might not be able to see for ourselves.
Educational Leaders help Educators to set goals for themselves, the children, and the centre.
One of the most important things an Educational Leader can do is help a child set realistic goals and create a plan to achieve those goals. A good Educational Leader will take into account the child’s strengths and weaknesses, as well as their interests, when goal setting.
Support and Motivation
Another important role of an Educational Leader is to provide support and motivation. Everyone gets discouraged at times, especially when working towards long-term goals. An Educational Leader can help us stay on track by offering encouragement and helping to see the progress they’ve made.
Implement New Ideas
Our Educators and children have lots of great ideas! An Educational Leader can help sort through these ideas and develop the best ones. They can also offer new perspectives that we may not have considered before.
Committed to Success
Perhaps the most important reason that we have Educational Leaders at Sesame Lane, is because they are true advocates for children, they are invested in your child’s success. A good Educational Leader genuinely cares about Educators and the children in their charge and wants to see them reach their full potential.
At Sesame Lane, our Educational Leaders are a powerful force in helping us achieve learning goals, both for uor team and for the children. They provide guidance, support, tools, encouragement, and objective perspectives when we need it most, so everyone at Sesame Lane from the children, to families, to our Educators and Teachers are supported to be the very best they can be.
You can learn more about the specific role played by an Educational Leader in this ACECQA Factsheet.