Siolta is the National Quality Framework for Early Childhood Education in Ireland. The contents of Siolta have been designed to assist all those concerned with the provision of early education in Ireland to participate in a developmental journey towards the improvement and enrichment of children’s early, and arguably most critical, life experiences.
Siolta is available for Childminders, Full Day Care services, Part-time daycare services, pre-school services and infant classes
Siolta consists of 12 Principals and 16 standards.
The 12 Principals include
- The Value of Early Childhood – Early childhood is a significant and distinct time in life that must be nurtured, respected, valued and supported in it’s own right
- Children First– The child’s individuality, strengths, rights and needs are central in the provision of quality early childhood experiences.
- Parents– Parents are the primary educators of the child and have a pre-eminent role in promoting his/her well-being, learning and development.
- Relationships– Responsive, sensitive and reciprocal relationships which are consistent over time, are essential to the wellbeing, learning and development of the young child.
- Equality– Equality is an essential characteristic of quality early childhood care and education
- Diversity– Quality early childhood settings acknowledge and respect diversity and ensure that all children and families have their individual, personal, cultural and linguistic identity validated.
- Environments– The physical environment of the young child has a direct impact on his/her well-being, learning and development
- Welfare– The safety, welfare and well-being of all children must be protected and promoted in all early childhood environments
- Role of the Adult– The role of the adult in providing quality early childhood experiences is fundamental.
- Teamwork– The provision of quality early childhood experiences requires cooperation, communication and mutual respect.
- Pedagogy– Pedagogy in early childhood is expressed by curricula or programmes of activities which take a holistic approach to the development and learning of the child and reflect the inseparable nature of care and education.
- Play– Play is central to the well-being, development and learning of the young child.
The 16 Siolta Standards are:
- Standard 1:Rights of the Child Link
- Standard 2:Environments Link
- Standard 3:Parents and Families Link
- Standard 4:Consultation Link
- Standard 5:Interactions Link
- Standard 6:Play Link
- Standard 7:Curriculum Link
- Standard 8:Planning and Evaluation Link
- Standard 9:Health and Welfare Link
- Standard 10:Organisation Link
- Standard 11:Professional Practice Link
- Standard 12:Communication Link
- Standard 13:Transitions Link
- Standard 14:Identity and Belonging Link
- Standard 15:Legislation and Regulation Link
- Standard 16:Community Involvement Link
For further information about the Siolta framework, click on Siolta