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Assessment of the quality of childcare centres in the Colombo Municipal Council area

Authors:

H M D Herath ,

Lady Ridgeway Hospital, Colombo, LK
About H M D

Senior Registrar, Lady Ridgeway Hospital, Colombo

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P M G Punchihewa,

Lady Ridgeway Hospital, Colombo, LK
About P M G
Consultant paediatrician, Lady Ridgeway Hospital, Colombo
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H M Bhagya Herath,

LK
About H M
Attorney at Law
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H M Madhavie Herath

LK
About H M

Sociologist

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Abstract

Background: There are 2 dimensions of childcare quality: process and structure. The interactions, activities, materials, learning opportunities, health and safety routines refer to process quality. Structural quality includes the group size, adult-child ratio and professional training of staff. No large scale studies are available on the quality of Sri Lankan childcare centres.

 

Objectives: To assess the quality of preschool and day care centres in the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) area and to evaluate how structural inputs and cost influence the process quality.

 

Design: Descriptive cross-sectional qualitative study

 

Method: Process quality was assessed using the Early Childhood Environmental Rating Scale-Revised. The cost and structural quality was assessed using a self-administered questionnaire.

 

Results: Overall process quality was mediocre, with 25% preschools being of poor quality and 6% being of good quality. Over half the centres did not have appropriate number of staff. Eighty percent of child groups were larger than appropriate. Only 8% of centres were led by a graduate. Of the teachers, 90% had preschool teacher training. Smaller student groups cared for by a higher number of staff had significantly higher process quality. Better quality preschools cost more.

 

Conclusions: The quality of care provided by childcare centres in the 6 Medical Officer of Health areas of CMC area was mediocre.

Sri Lanka Journal of Child Health, 2013; 42: 200-204

 

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4038/sljch.v42i4.6263

How to Cite: Herath, H.M.D., Punchihewa, P.M.G., Herath, H.M.B. and Herath, H.M.M., 2013. Assessment of the quality of childcare centres in the Colombo Municipal Council area. Sri Lanka Journal of Child Health, 42(4), pp.200–204. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljch.v42i4.6263
Published on 15 Dec 2013.
Peer Reviewed

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