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The Pyramid Model: Effective Workforce

An effective workforce is the foundation base of the Pyramid Model. The base includes effective program policies and procedures that reflect appropriate practice in addition to well trained, stable staff that are committed to continuous improvement.

Having an effective workforce that values quality programming is important to young children's success. A stable workforce is accomplished through staff feeling supported and valued. Without a stable workforce, children cannot be provided the continuity of care that builds relationships.

The Nebraska Core Competencies for Early Childhood Professionals allows staff and administrators an opportunity to assess and identify skill levels that are needed for working effectively with young children. The document is a tool that can be used in planning and tracking professional development. In addition, the Nebraska Early Learning Guidelines are available to describe what children need to learn and be able to do and how adults can support that learning. Staff not only attend training but need to be part of a system that ensures implementation of what they have learned.

An effective worker collaborates with co-workers, parents, and others for the good of the child. There is shared decision making about practices, procedures, and individual child planning.

Job descriptions and policies provide a framework of workplace expectations that provide for more consistent interactions with young children and their families and set the tone for the program.

Early childhood professionals explore their own feelings about children's behaviors and differences. By examining their own outlook, they can better plan how they will react to children. They also appreciate being recognized for the work they do and for sharing their skills with others.

The National Economic Impacts of the Child Care Sector Study (1), published in 2002, informs about the link between quality care and labor productivity. Child care contributes to a stable and consistent workforce.