Managing change in Early Years settings

Fri, 27 May 2011 11:51:00 BST

Judith Hunter - Lecturer, Education and Community Studies The importance of having a graduate led early years workforce is continually stressed these days. And as part of the training for leadership in early years settings, students are expected to consider how they would manage change.

And Judith Hunter is helping students cope with change with her current research. As a tutor on many early years programmes at the University, particularly at University Campus Barnsley, her research interest is in the role of a senior or lead practitioner (as they are known) in an early years setting.

As she says, ‘As part of their studies, students have to consider how they will manage change in their leadership roles in any capacity; from changing staff, children through to changing settings and practice. I’ve chosen to follow up this with research on managing change within an organisation, using a private day nursery as a case study. I’m looking at the process of change and how its managed, the relationships and processes that happen during any change, the impact that professionals have on line management, leadership and practice within the setting and the changes in professional identity during a period of change.

I chose this area because it links to Early Years Professional Status and how an Early Years Professional supports the new owner and their team. And the students I work with benefit, as they are expected to take lead roles during their studies, working with different teams and developing positive relationships with children and their parents to help alleviate fears and anxieties. I can really help them get to grips with the real issues and be able to deal and cope with change in future.’

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