Regarding the Methodology
We incorporated the Continuous Quality Improvement Methodology in our projects beginning in 2011, with the training and collaboration of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), allowing us to test ideas and adjust them to different contexts, thus ensuring local relevance and applicability. Moreover, the methodology encouraged evidence-based decision-making and promoted the sustainability of good practices.
In addition to promoting the use of data for decision making purposes, this model encourages collaboration and networking.
What is the Continuous Quality Improvement Methodology?
This model is based on a simple and powerful idea for improvement: we can accelerate change by subjecting ideas to rapid testing cycles.
For such purposes, it is firstly important to answer the following questions:
• What are we trying to achieve?
• How will we know that the change is an improvement?
• What changes can we make that will result in an improvement?
The Importance of Using Data
A fundamental pillar of this methodology is using and analyzing data. It is necessary to frequently measure and use data to analyze the results throughout the entire process. Therefore, measurements show us how we are doing regarding the expected goal, thus allowing to make decisions based on concrete results.
The model also considers the use of the PDSA cycle, a structure organized to quickly test ideas for change in real work scenarios, consisting of 4 consecutive stages: Planning, Doing, Studying and Adjusting.
Networking: Key to Continuous Quality Improvement
Networking is one of the pillars of the Continuous Improvement Methodology, therefore, it is at the base of the Un Buen Comienzo and We Learn programs, in which we have promoted the establishment of Learning Improvement Networks, comprised of stakeholders, school leadership teams and educational teams from the municipalities and schools that are affiliated with our programs.
There are currently 84 schools that are part of the UBC and 14 of the We Learn Learning Improvement Networks.
The goal of networking is to develop a collaborative model that allows:
– Establishing goals that are shared by all members.
– Creating, testing and sharing strategies among peers.
– Analyzing results and adjusting implemented initiatives.
– Jointly addressing current and future challenges.
Thus, an active involvement of the entire educational community is generated, encouraging improvements in teaching and leadership practices, in order to strengthen both the learning of children at their beginning stages as well as the learning of English from an early age.
Are instances for collaborative work in which all the Network’s members meet to update their knowledge, share strategies and local initiatives and reflect on the results of various interventions. To do this, analysis and reflections tools are applied, data is assessed, and achievements and goals are praised and celebrated.
Are instances that allow outreach activities to take place between educational and school leadership teams that are part of the Improvement Network, in order to address a particular theme. This space for exchange and reflection results in a mutual benefit: the hosts present their strategies and receive feedback, while visitors acquire learning from those who have a greater track record in the program and valuable experiences to share.
Are instances in which educational and school leadership teams from a municipality meet to analyze and reflect on the work done at the classroom and school levels. These instances are self-managed by the municipalities themselves and are aimed at strengthening collaborative work and analysis at the local level.