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What is Tennessee’s Star-Quality Child Care Program?

What is Tennessee’s Star-Quality Child Care Program?

February 10, 2017 | By Tom Tu
The Star-Quality Child Care Program was launched in 2001 to improve the quality of child care in Tennessee and provide parents information about the quality of care their children receive.
Tennessee Star Quality

Why is the Star-Quality Program important?

Research is increasingly showing the direct link between the quality of early child care experiences and its impact on children’s later success in academics and socio-emotional development. For instance, young children who attended higher quality early care programs had better language development, problem solving, and social skills.

The purpose of the Star-Quality program is two-fold. The first is that it is implemented to support, recognize, and encourage child care providers to offer higher quality care in their programs. The second is to help families choose their child care provider with greater confidence by having access to information about the quality of the provider.

Tennessee Star Quality

What are Star-Quality requirements?

There are five major categories over which a child care center is evaluated:

  1. Director and teaching staff qualifications, training, and experience
  2. Developmental learning
  3. Parental and family involvement
  4. Ratios and group sizes
  5. Program assessment (on-site observation)

A program can earn and progress from one star to three stars. The program evaluator assigns a star rating to each category and the overall rating is calculated by taking the average of the ratings for each category.

HiMama + Tennessee’s Star-Quality Program

Numerous early childhood programs in Tennessee use HiMama in their licensed child care facilities to meet expectations set out by the Star-Quality program. How your center chooses to use HiMama will vary based on the unique circumstances of your community, families, educators and attending children. However, we’ve provided some guidance on how HiMama will assist your early childhood program in meeting the expectations set by Star-Quality.

Director and teaching staff qualifications, training, and experience
  • Increase retention of high-level staff through teacher empowerment
  • Staff is applying mobile technology in the classroom to better align with expectations of the families
  • Provides professional growth and development activities, through numerous HiMama resources, including weekly blog articles, weekly podcasts for leaders in early childhood education, white papers and reports
  • Components of staff performance can be evaluated through the HiMama app, including classroom documentation quality and interactions with families
  • Parental and family involvement
  • HiMama enables early childhood programs to connect parents with the classroom by inviting them to participate in children’s experiences and in turn build all around trusting partnerships
  • Parents receive automatic individual updates and reports about their child’s experience and development in the early childhood program, including assessments to reflect on a child’s readiness for transitions to new programs or into school age programs
  • HiMama has created a parent handbook template that includes risk management strategies and communication plans
  • Developmental learning
  • TN-ELDS (Tennessee Early Learning Developmental Standards) is accessible for child care and early learning programs directly through the HiMama app, enabling assistance with lesson planning, developmental observations, online portfolios and development reports
  • HiMama electronic portfolios and development assessment reports can be shared with parents on an as-needed basis or by the schedule set by the early learning center / program
  • Visual documentation of classroom activities assists in evaluation of classroom setup and learning activities
  • Assess gaps in programming across learning domains
  • Ratios and group sizes
  • Easily access classroom attendance, activities, and observations in real-time
  • Program assessment (on-site observation)
  • The HiMama application saves on average 5 hours per teacher per week. Therefore, teachers can dedicate more time to observing and promoting interactions in the classroom that spur developmental growth for children.
  • Intuitive lesson planning features empower teachers to be organized and follow through on their lesson plans to maximize children’s learning experiences.

  • How do I find the closest child care provider with a Star-Quality rating?

    To find a Star-Quality provider near you, a parent or caregiver can visit Tennessee’s Department of Human Services website.

      HiMama makes documentation and reporting of children’s learning and development in alignment with Tennessee Early Learning Developmental Standards (TN-ELDS) quick and easy so that educators can spend less time on documentation and paperwork and more time with children. Learn how HiMama can help you align to Tennessee's quality guidelines without all the paperwork and late nights.

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