A childcare director has many responsibilities, not only to the parents and children in their program, but also to the employees that work for them. One of those responsibilities is to assess or evaluate employees. These assessments or evaluations can provide a great opportunity to find strengths and weaknesses in the employees, as well as within the program itself. The results can then be used to help build on the program in a positive way.
Although some people or centers may think evaluations are stressful and unnecessary, they can ultimately be a valuable tool for most programs.
Below are some questions and answers regarding evaluations for childcare professionals.
Question: How do you suggest we implement changes after we have completed an evaluation on a positive note? Can you provide examples of evaluation forms for childcare professionals?
Answer: Ending your evaluations on a positive note is a great goal to keep in mind. In general, the plan of action piece comes at the end of the conversation so it does pose quite a challenge. I would recommend stating the plan of action or correction and then asking the staff member what you or your center can do to support them in making those changes or reaching those goals. A director should be realistically supportive in working with their staff to meet their goals or implement necessary changes. Another option may be to recommend a mentor teacher or further source of support and information. In addition to this, create a realistic timeline to check in with the staff member and see how these changes are going.
As for evaluation form examples, evaluations differ so much from each center and even type of staff member, thus I would recommend that if you are not currently using one that benefits you, perhaps you can create your own in a Word Document. Another resource may be a paid curriculum site such as TeachersPayTeachers or similar.
Question: How do you complete staff evaluations when you are short staffed?
Answer: That is a great question and a common concern for many directors. Since each center is unique I can’t speak to specifics for your situation but I would be happy to give some suggestions to try to help.
I strongly urge you to continue doing evaluations and not to perceive them as a burden as they are extremely important tools for goal setting and improvement.
Question: My staff do not like to be evaluated and get rather upset. How do I help them feel more comfortable during evaluations?
Answer: It is important to understand that evaluations are stressful for teachers. They don’t enjoy being observed and often are worried about the outcome. It is your job to help alleviate this. In addition to this they put a great deal of preparation into the evaluated activities and really want to perform well. I suggest that you get authentic feedback from them regarding what would make them feel more comfortable and capable during evaluations.
These concerns are also addressed throughout the training we offer, A Director’s Guide to Evaluations. If you are interested in registering for this one hour course, please use this link: https://www.cdastars.com/store/p598/Directors-Guide
Question: I am the new director for a center and want to begin evaluating the environment as well as staff. What would be a good starting point and method for this?
Answer: It sounds like you are on a fantastic path to making your staff feel comfortable with evaluations and protocol in your center. There are multiple things that need to be considered when implementing new evaluation systems and I think the best place to begin is in taking inventory of your staff’s needs and your center’s goals. Try providing a survey to your staff about their needs, habits, education, training, and more. You will be surprised at how much you learn based upon that simple survey! In addition to this you need to examine what your center’s goals are and what type of program you are providing to families.
If your center is a Montessori-based center then your evaluations of both environment and staff must focus on Montessori elements. If your center caters to military families and their unique needs then that is where the evaluations should focus. Your center may also be part of a network of centers that provides evaluation resources and methods that must be followed. After you know the direction in which you are going with evaluation goals then you can start to develop a method that works best for you and your staff.
For more information on A Director's Guide to Evaluations,
register for our one hour course:
Have information to share? Please use the comments section below...