Successful and enduring businesses are built on a foundation of discipline... and, in our opinion, diligent documentation! Documentation is a form of discipline that will help you better understand and strengthen your preschool.
What types of documentation are crucial for your preschool? And what purpose do they serve? Let's dive in.
Improves quality of education
Every preschool puts together a student portfolio at least once a year in time for the parent-teacher conference. However, it's worth considering the benefits of documenting children's progress more regularly. Particularly when it concerns very young children, recording their achievements and weaknesses on a weekly or daily basis can:
- Help early childhood educators understand their students' individual needs better,
- Help educators plan more targetted lessons,
- Create a record that shows the students' abilities improving consistently,
- Allow parents to know what learning area to focus on at home.
All these benefits aside, regularly updating student portfolios also saves your teachers the stress of putting them together from scratch when parent-teacher conference comes around. Check out our starter guide on how to write a good portfolio.
Chats, Announcements, and Fees
Builds stronger parent relationships
Documenting parent communication can serve as a precaution to protect your preschool in cases of miscommunication. But, did you know that you can use it as an opportunity to bond with your students' parents?
Using documentation to keep parents in the loop can give them the sense that they are up to date with their children's education. Keeping them updated – without waiting for parents to make inquiries – also shows that your preschool is proactive.
These are some tools you can use to achieve this:
- A shared events calendar between the preschool and parents will allow parents to easily check for upcoming events even without reminders from teachers.
- A digitally secure chat/announcement platform will
(a) consolidate information sent out to parents in one place, making it easy to find, if needed, and
(b) assure parents that sensitive information (like their child's whereabouts) is well protected
- Digital fee transaction, which reduces the risk involved in cash transactions and auto-generates a paper trail (e-receipts sent to parents and transaction reflected on bank statements).
Documentation in your preschool builds a culture of trust and accountability with parents. Having this level of transparency allows them to trust your preschool to be on the ball and shows that you are aware of their needs.
Bulletin and Centre Log
Helps you run a smoother operation
Internal communication within your team can double as documentation for your preschool. A on-going daily log of every notable incident in your centre can be valuable, especially since you are handling very young children. Think about how useful a timestamped note of an injury can be when recounting the incident to parents or needing to show records to for insurance claims.
Some apps, like LittleLives helps you set up a digital version of this centre log, whereby teachers can post updates quickly and on the go.
The daily centre log sets up your team to be more informed and efficient. These simple steps will help you run a smoother operation and reduce the manual workload of your teachers and admin staff at the same time.
Reports for Licensing
Some preschool management software, like LittleLives, automatically collate your input (e.g. daily attendance and health check reports, financial reports) into reports. These reports are organised and easy to download as and when you need it. Obtaining and renewing your preschool license does not have to be an arduous process. Documentation in your preschool is a simple habit to upkeep, made simpler with software, and it will be a favour to your future self.
We hope this starter guide helped you figure out how you can approach documentation within your preschool. Let's get organised!