Web QRIS letter: Providence Wee Care

December 11, 2015

Providence Wee Care has chosen to participate in Oregon’s Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS)—a program to raise the quality and consistency of child care in early learning programs across the state. We are proud to report that Providence Wee Care received a 5-star Quality Program rating!

The quality rating means we meet essential evaluation standards that support quality early learning for all children. We are committed to quality care and learning for all children, and know the first years of life build the foundation for lifelong learning and success. That’s why we were among the first programs in the state to participate and receive a QRIS rating.

A 5-star Quality Program has met the requirements for a 3- and 4-star Quality Program, as well as additional standards:

  • Best practices in adult-child interaction
  • Parents are encouraged to play an active role in the program community and culture
  • High staff training and qualification levels: the director has a Bachelor’s Degree in the field; the majority of staff has an Associate Degree in the field or equivalent training.
  • Regular evaluation of employees using observations
  • Provides substantial employment benefits to staff

We are particularly proud of our efforts in the Personnel Quality standard area. 80 percent of our teachers have achieved an Associate Degree or better, and 85 percent of our teacher assistants have earned an Oregon Registry Step 5 through 8.5. Our entire staff has committed to a high level of continuing education and training, concentrating on child development, understanding and guiding behavior, observation and assessment, and learning environments and curriculum, among other research-based core knowledge categories. Our staff retention is annualized at 84 percent, far higher than the industry standard of 59 to 75 percent.

We are focusing on what Oregon has learned about the long road to Kindergarten readiness and beyond. We are concentrating on fostering social and emotional development (self-regulation and approaches to learning) in addition to our rich program of individualized developmentally appropriate practice.

You may find this recent Oregonian article to be of interest:

Wee Care is part of a small, but growing, percentage of early learning programs in Oregon to commit to on-going quality improvement, reflective of Providence Health & Services’ commitment to high reliability and the best experience in care. From the article:

"We know that child care is a crucial and fundamental support for working families and really fundamental to family well-being," said David Mandell, director of policy and research for the Early Learning Division. "We also know that the quality of the experiences that children have (in care) is also really important to child development."

Bobbie Weber, an Oregon State University researcher who is considered one of the state's top experts on child care, said QRIS has been built around time-tested standards.

"There's 30, 40 years of research saying that when those characteristics are in place, the likelihood that children will do well is increased," she said. "These aren't subjective judgments. They're research-based judgments."

"Those judgments," she said, "will ultimately become a valuable tool for parents as the system reaches its final stages in the next two years: Building a public, searchable database of Oregon child care providers and their ratings.”

We are proud to have achieved the highest rating possible in Oregon, and are pleased to bring this level of service to you and your family. Thanks for continuing to support us as we focus on continued growth and improvement. Your involvement in the program is essential. Our #1 priority, as always, is to ensure we are bringing our best to your children every day.

Best Regards,

Colette Brown
Managing Director
Providence Wee Care