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EChO (Early Childhood Organisation Inc.) is a group of Australian professional educators whose focus is the education and care of children ages 3 to 8 years. This paper outlines a project effort made by EChO entitled "Enhancing Professionalism for Early Childhood Educators in South Australia by Improving Classroom Practice and Researching Appropriate Practice for the 21st Century." The description first contains a grant proposal including expected outcomes, a commitment to meeting professional objectives, and the role of partners--promoting partnership between educator authorities, teacher organizations and universities. The proposal also includes: (1) rationale and objectives of EChO; (2) methodology of EChO's professional development program;(3) target audience of the conference--early childhood educators from government and non government schools; and (4) professional development program. All seminars, clusters and conferences are designed to incorporate the principles of adult learning. Following this section is a study of EChO's involvement in the National Professional Development Project, including a history of former research methods, and following with current research, evaluation surveys, and outcomes, which focus on the long-term implications for improved student learning outcomes, as well as characteristics of the teaching workforce. The research and evaluation has shown several key indicators that can be named as "value added" components to teacher effectiveness, and therefore also may be named long-term implications for improved student learning outcomes. These are increased motivation, increased commitment, increased opportunity, valuing current practice, and increased Autonomy. A participant survey is included. (WJC)

Descriptors: Curriculum Development, Curriculum Research, Early Childhood Education, Foreign Countries, Instructional Improvement, Teacher Education, Teacher Student Relationship

Autor: Sandercock, Liz


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