Welcome!

Welcome to this new website, which has been created to provide information and connect you with Erasmus+ project SEQUENCES – Self and external Evaluation of Quality in Europe to Nourish Childhood Education Services. Here you will find what the project is about and what we are trying to achieve, the partner organisations involved, the core activities and the targets/outputs of the project. On this website we will also be providing regular updates of what is happening, both in terms of implementation of the project and on the topic itself, which is the improvement of ECEC services at providers’ level by developing and implementing effective tools for evaluation. Click HERE to start with the proper project introduction!

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SEQUENCES project opportunities presented in Vilnius

On Thursday, 4 January, in Vilnius, the Lithuanian Education Trade Union (LETU) convened a multiplier SEQUENCES project event and organised a national conference on Early childhood education. The event was attended by 130 participants, mainly education personnel from all regions of the country.

During the conference, a lot of attention was paid to the problems of early childhood education: pre-school and pre-primary. Laima Jankauskienė, the representative of the Ministry of Education and Science, presented the proposal for early education. It is proposed that the first class would be from six years old since 2020, and the pre-primary education for the five-year-olds would be mandatory as early as 2019. At present, pre-primary education is mandatory for children aged six.

Egidijus Milešinas, the vice president of LETU, spoke about the SEQUENCES project opportunities. Project could facilitate the improvement of working conditions of pre-school and pre-primary education personnel, improve their training opportunities and serve as internal quality assurance measure to help teachers to improve.

Tatiana Babrauskienė and Inga Puiša, the LETU representatives, presented SEQUENCES toolkit, which is based on collected a set of indicators to assess 5 quality domains (availability of services, personnel, training program, assessment / monitoring, management / funding) aimed to develop a culture of quality assurance at the level of pre-school and early education providers. Information about future trainings was also provided.

The Ministry of Education and Science informed that in the near future a pilot project for the external evaluation of the quality of pre-school education institutions is planned. It was agreed that the Lithuanian Education Trade Union, which puts a lot of emphasis on the internal quality assurance, will share its experience and outcomes of the SEQUENCES project and cooperate with the project promoters.

Focus Group held in Romania

The “Zana Zorilor” Kindergarten, in collaboration with other five state kindergartens from Cluj-Napoca, has organized Focus Group meetings in December 2016 and February 2017. Kindergarten headmasters, representatives of the methodical committee (experienced governesses that ensures training for beginner governesses) and parents who are part of the board of directors participated. The aim of this meeting was to identify good practices in early education and care. There have been identified a lot of examples of good practices from both teachers and from parents. The conclusion of the meeting was that both teachers and headmasters need training and support for developing new ways of communicating with parents and new ways of carrying out activities in kindergartens.

Sequences project holds Study Visit in Dublin

Teresa Heeney, CEO, welcomes our European Partners to Early Childhood Ireland.

During the recent study visit to Dublin, hosted by Early Childhood Ireland, our European partners visited award winning early years’ settings in North County Dublin.

Our European partners were warmly welcomed by the educators and the children. During their time in the settings they engaged in informative discussions about the ECCE sector in Ireland and observed the play-based emergent curriculum and pedagogical documentation in action.

Our partners were delighted to have this wonderful opportunity to spend time in these settings and their experience will continue to inform the work of the SeQuences Project.

Pictures:

Nickola Cullen, Beverton Pre-school, Donabate welcomes Sylvia Liuti (Associaziona FORMA. Azione, srl, Italy), Ljiljana Vasic, (European Parents Association, Serbia), Živilė Belickienė & Asta Juknienė (Lithuanian Education Trade Union ETU).

Kerri Mc Cracken, Manager of Roots and Wings, Donabate greets Mary Rose Cefai, (Malta Union of Teachers), Krisztina Domján, (Corvinus University, Budapest) Favia Caoiraku Scelloni (Sem Society Cooperative Social, Italy) and Chiara Palazzetti (Associazione FORMA.Azione srl., Italy).

Mandy Corcoran and Fiona Brogan welcome Marlene Housley, (Malta Union of Teachers), Lavinia Ioana Mehedeniuc, (Gradinitia cu Program Prelungit “Zana Zanelor”, Romania) Arja Krauchenberg, (European Parents Association, Austria) & Eleonora Brescaro, (Sem Society Cooperative Social, Italy) to Cottage Kids, Lusk.

Simona Montagnoli, (Sem Society Cooperative Social), Maria Ioana Zdroba, (Gradinitia cu Program Prelungit “Zana Zanelor”, Romania), Lorna Schembri, (Malta Union of Teachers) & Egidijus Milešinas (Lithuanian Education Trade Union) arriving at Bizzy B’s Preschool, Loughshinny to meet Olive Power.

 

Focus Groups

Various Focus groups are being organised as part of the first series of activities related to the Sequences project as follows:

Early years students and centre managers, Parents and Early years specialist who participated in the Sequences Focus Group meeting in Dublin. Apologies to the Dad who left just before the photo was taken!

ECEC practitioners participating in the Focus Group organised by the Malta Union of Teachers, with was held at St Benedict College, Birzebbuga Primary School in the south of Malta.

Focus Group by Forma.Azione and SEMCooperativa Sociale

Associazione FORMA: Azione in collaboration with SEM Cooperativa Sociale organised a Focus Group meeting on 12th April. It was attended by both public and private ECEC service providers, members of regional coordinators network in Umbria and Università degli Studi di Perugia. It aimed at identifying quality practices as well as approaches and methods implemented by both public and private ECEC services.

Many interesting elements emerged: the services in our region respond in a good way to the needs of families both in terms of flexible hours and programme, the importance of well prepared educators and team work, creative workshops for children and parents and importance of relation & communication with parents and families. Quality for ECEC is intended as quality and wellbeing of the child, not only in terms of flexibility, but mainly in terms of offer and curriculum.

Focus group in Lithuania

Lithuanian education trade union organized the focus group meeting on March 14th. Participants in the focus group were from trade unions, kindergartens, Ministry of Education and Science and from National Agency for School Evaluation.

Lithuanian education trade union presented the SEQUENCES project. Participants were asked to discuss about good practices of early childhood quality assurance system. There were a lot good experiences identified, examples and different methods of parent’s involvement to quality assurance system, but still there is a lack of training for kindergartens teachers how to work with parents.

Also there was discussion about evaluation process of quality in Lithuanian kindergartens. National Agency for School Evaluation is preparing new Qualify Assurance evaluation system for kindergartens. It was decided that Lithuanian education trade union will continue to cooperate with authorities in this project.

Survey on good practices and quality of Childcare Centres

A survey for parents and practitioners working at child care centres/nurseries is being held as part of a Erasmus+ project entitled “SEQUENCES – Self and external Evaluation of QUality in EUrope to Nourish Childhood Education Services” funded by the European Commission. This project aims to respond to the need to improve the quality of ECEC services through the creation of evaluation tools. The survey ends on 15th March 2017. Please respond according to your knowledge and your own personal experience. Click HERE to start the survey.