Early Learning General News – February 2018

General news for the Early Learning sector for February 2018 including Incredible Years® Programmes, Safety checking and a new Kāhui Ako resource.

New Incredible Years® Programmes for parents and teachers of children with autism

The Ministry of Education has been offering Incredible Years programmes nationally to parents and teachers of children aged 3-8 since 2010. From March 2018, 2 new programmes will be available for parents and teachers of children aged 2-5 with autism: Incredible Years Autism and Incredible Years Helping Children with Autism.

Incredible Years Autism is a 12-14 session programme for parents, and Incredible Years Helping Children with Autism is a separate 6-session programme for teachers. These programmes are highly interactive, collaborative, self-directed, and driven by the child’s developmental abilities and goals. Together, they aim to promote children's emotional regulation, positive social interactions and language development.

The Ministry believes that it is the key adults in a child’s life that have the biggest impact and can make the greatest change. It is encouraging that both parents and teachers of children with autism attend these programmes.

Parents and teachers may be referred to the programmes by early learning services, health professionals and community organisations, or parents can refer themselves.

The new programmes will initially be offered in Auckland, Tauranga, Hawke’s Bay, Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch and Invercargill, with further programmes being announced later this year.

For more information about these programmes, visit Incredible Years Autism(external link) on TKI (Te Kete Ipurangi) or contact incredibleyears.autism@education.govt.nz.

You must safety check all children’s workers

You must safety check all your new core and non-core children’s workers before they start work in your service – this requirement has been in place since 1 July 2015. All 7 components of the safety check must be completed for new children’s workers before they start work.

By 1 July 2018, you need to have safety checked your existing core children’s workers – we recommend you start working on this now. By 1 July 2019, you will need to have safety checked your existing non-core workers. An existing children’s worker is anyone who started in their current role in your service before 1 July 2015. There are 4 components to the safety check for existing workers.

Read more about safety checking on our website

If you work in a service that you own, you must be safety checked

If you are a children’s worker in a service that you own, you must be safety checked. You will need to get a third party to complete all 7 components of the safety check for you. You can use our approved screening service to do this. Read more on our website, or go straight to the screening service’s website(external link).

Education Sector Logon (ESL) upgrade

Image showing the Education Sector Logon screen.

Users will experience an updated logon screen and improved self-service. There will be no change to the username, password or security questions for a user’s Education Sector Logon account. Further information about the upgrade can be found on the Services website(external link).

Further information and announcements about the upgrade will be posted on the Services website(external link).

New resource for sharing information in Kāhui Ako

A new information sharing resource is available for Kāhui Ako and early learning services. The resource sets out processes to ensure all parties are kept safe, practices are legal and privacy is protected. 

Sharing personal information allows Kāhui Ako to work with individual children and young people from across their communities. This may be, for example, a joint response to issues such as attendance and wellbeing.

Most information can be shared within a Kāhui Ako, provided it is in the best interests of children and young people to do so and the right processes are followed.

The new information sharing resource steps a Kāhui Ako or early learning service through:

  • deciding what information can be shared and what can’t
  • putting protocols in place to keep the information safe
  • informing parents and caregivers and seeking consent where needed.

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner and 12 Kāhui Ako have been involved in the development of this material.  

If you have any questions or comments please email information.sharing@education.govt.nz.

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