What is Quality Rated?
It is a systematic approach to assess, improve and communicate the level of quality in early and school-age care and education programs. Similar to rating systems for other industries, a Quality Rated assigns a quality rating to programs that meet a set of defined program standards. By participating in Georgia’s voluntary Quality Rated, providers are demonstrating their goals of continuous quality improvement. Even providers that have met the standards of the entry Quality Rated levels have achieved a level of quality that is beyond the minimum requirements to operate.
Why is it important to participate?
- Leads to improved quality of early care and education services and outcomes for Georgia’s children
- Research found positive associations between early care programs quality and child outcomes to promote school readiness (Vandell 2004)
- Increase parents’ understanding and demand for higher quality early education – MARKET DRIVEN
- Increase professional development opportunities and rewards for early care practitioners and providers
What are the Eligibility Requirements for Program Participation?
- Licensed for a minimum of 12 months
- Compliant with Child Care Licensing Regulations
- Compliant with Georgia’s Pre K Program, not on probation
- Compliant with Child and Adult Food Program and Summer Food Services
- Registration of all staff members in the PDR
Georgia’s rating system includes five elements:
- Standards that lead to a rating that informs parents and the public about the level of quality of a program
- Accountability and monitoring that determine how well programs meet the standards, assign ratings, and verify ongoing compliance with quality standards.
- Support for programs and professionals to encourage participation and improve quality.
- Financial incentives to help programs improve learning environments, attain higher ratings and sustain long term quality. All levels of Quality Rated are supported by bonus packages that include training, materials and equipment.
- Consumer education to inform parents and the public about the importance of quality early education and school-age care. DECAL is working with a marketing company to determine the names of the "levels" and easily recognizable symbols.
What is the process?
Components of Rating System
Online Portfolio which consists of 5 Standards
- Standard 1- Director and Teacher Qualifications and PDR Verification
- Standard 2-Teacher:Child Ratio Requirements
- Standard 3- Child Health, Nutrition and Physical Activity
- Standard 4-Family Partnership using “Strengthening Family tool”
- Intentional Learning Practices using “Ages and Stages Assessment”
Environmental Rating Scale using ITERS, ECERS and SACERS and unannounced visit to evaluate program
Possible Assignment of Annual Ratings
Bright from the Start is working with GEEARS and a marketing company to better determine the names of our levels within the system. There are three specific level assignments possible.
- Entry Level
- Intermediate Level