On June 11, 18, and 25, 2022, twenty-nine after-school child care providers from eight different child care centers throughout Saipan attended a 3-hour training cohort series on School Age Care Environmental Rating Scale Updated (SACERS-U). The training sessions were held at the Kagman Community Center and conducted by Evergreen Learning Coach Erlaine DLG. Evangelista.
SACERS-U is designed to assess quality interactions and environment for children of school age, 5 to 12, during their out-of-school time. The scales are designed to assess what children directly experience in their programs that influences their development, including interactions that go on in their classroom between staff and children and among the children themselves. Additionally, the scales assess the interactions children have with the many materials and activities in their environment, as well as those features, such as space, schedule, and materials that support these interactions.
The cohort series covered an introduction to the SACERS-U scale, explained how items are scored, and discussed commonly used terms. One session was devoted to answering questions participants brought back to the group that they experienced while conducting their SACERS-U self-assessment for their own after-school program. The training concluded with participants completing their Quality Improvement Plan (QIP). A QIP is a document that helps a provider identify their areas of strength and improvement and create a specific plan to help them achieve their goals towards improving their practices. Both QIP and SACERS-U self-assessment documents are required under Star 1 in Reach Higher, CNMI, which is the CNMI’s version of the Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS). Reach Higher, CNMI helps identify quality child care programs using a Star Level system from Star 1 thru 5. The higher the Star Level, the higher a program is in quality practices. To learn more visit www.cnmicclp.gov.mp.