Preschool Teacher Hiring Standards, Policies, and Practices

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(by Amanda V. del Rosario)


The early years of children are important because of their unique developmental needs (physical, cognitive, social and emotional). These needs can only be identified and addressed by professionally trained and competent preschool or early childhood teachers. However, attracting and hiring these teachers are serious challenges for school administrators. To look more closely into the problem and help craft a solution, this paper examined the current standards, policies, and practices in hiring preschool teachers in public and private schools in Pasig City based on the recommended hiring standards, policies, and practices in the literature, DepEd, and experts. The study suggests appropriate standards, policies, and practices in hiring teachers that will ensure that children’s unique developmental needs are met and that they shall have gained readiness to proceed to the next educational level.


Background of the Background of the Study

Children who undergo preschool education perform better in primary grades (grade 1-3) than those who do not (Branscombe, Castle, Dorsey, Surbeck, and Taylor 2000; Jalongo, Fennimore, Pattnaik, Laverick, Brewster, and Mutuku 2004; Laosa 2005; Soliven, Guerrero, Barsaga, Palma, Canlas, and Garon 1997).& Mutuku. By the time they enter elementary school, they can say the alphabet, write their names, and count numbers one to ten. They adjust better, follow instructions, and interact with their teachers and classmates. Because of thparents realize the benefits in the early schooling of children, preschool student enrollment has been growing in number, which encouraginges a number of investors to set up preschools. Preschool education is mostly managed by private individuals, organizations, and institutions because of insufficient government funding for the enhancement of preschool education (Neri 2001; Soliven et al. 1997). According to the Department of Education (DepEd), tis, there has been an unprecedented growth in the number of preschools both in rural and urban areas in the private sector. The latest directory of private preschools in Metro Manila from the Department of Education (DepEd) shows that there are 1,477 preschools all over the National Capital Region during the school year 2005-2006, and 872 preschools during the school year 2000-2001; thus, there was an increase of 575 preschools. (see table 1). (See Table 1)(See Table 1) he number latest of private schools in Metro Manila grew from 4,788 in school year 2003-2004 to 6664 in the school year 2007-2008, a 72% showing increase. from school year 2000-2001 to school year 2005-2006 (see table 1). Preschool enrollment in private schools rose from 349,574 in school year 2003-2004 to 410,778 in school year 2007-2008, an 85% increase. Many see preschool education as a profitable business, but one that entails high costs if one is to meet certain standards, such as hiring qualified and licensed teachers and paying higher salaries. Quality education also means better teacher-to-student ratio (the ideal is 1:10 or 1:15), a developmentally appropriate curriculum, and quality teaching materials—all of which translate to higher costs. Ms. Vanessa Morales, owner and administrator of Kid’s First Discovery Space preschool in BF Homes, Parañaque, wanted her preschool to be different from preschools run by business people. Her priority is providing quality education on a not-for-profit basis. At Kid’s First, she has knowledgeable and experienced teachers: all her head teachers have master’s degrees in Education or Psychology, major in child development (Manuzon 2006).

Due to the growing number of private preschools in Metro Manila, there will be a great demand for preschool...
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