The sharing of the practitioner version of the ECD Practitioner Quality Reflection Tool is the final chapter in a story of multi-stakeholder collaboration in ECD. The story began with a discussion on ‘What is quality in ECD?’. The actors in this collaboration were many. They include the BRIDGE national and provincial ECD communities of practice, the nine partner organisations and the practitioners who took part in the Quality Tool pilot project, key CoP members who gave input and support to BRIDGE during the development process, and the funders of the pilot and the development of the final version of the Tool.
As debates on what constitutes quality deepened, the impact of different contexts for ECD on understandings of quality took on a central role. It was for this reason that the CoP felt it important to gather views on quality from practitioners working in different contexts. Reflective practice could be used as both a means of collecting this information, and as a means of empowering practitioners to grow their own professional understanding of quality issues. Research has shown that reflective practice is generally considered to be an enabler of life-long learning, increased professional competence and enhanced service quality across a range of sectors.
Piloting of the Reflection Tool in 2016, recommendations from this process and subsequent refinements led to the development of the current version of the tool. The Tool is designed to be printed out and kept in a ring-binder file; this means that practitioners can build up this file as a resource, adding in their own written reflections, planning templates and any other resources they come across.
The ECD Practitioner Quality Reflection Tool can be downloaded from the BRIDGE website here. It is an Open Education Resource, and can be adapted for use with acknowledgement to BRIDGE.
We are very grateful to the funders who supported BRIDGE at different stages in the development of the Tool: