Since 2015, BCcampus has led research to inform the development of a professional development web solution for the Provincial Office of the Early Years. With the goal of improving early years programs and services, the provincial government has sought to support training and increase access to professional development opportunities for those who work in the early years sector. Part of this initiative is a plan from the Ministry of Advanced Education and the Provincial Office for the Early Years in the Ministry of Children and Family Development to create a web solution that consolidates all professional development and training resources related to the early years sector in a centralized online environment.

Early Years WebsiteResearch to date indicates that there is no shortage of training opportunities for early sector professionals. This is evident in the scan that identified 967 training events in 2015; however, there is no centralized coordinated process or tool that promotes training events across all early years sector systems such as health, family support, early care, and education. The research conducted by BCcampus including an environmental scan and two subsequent reports engaged sector stakeholders in identifying priorities to address and functions to include, in a professional development web solution. In response to a proposal submitted by BCcampus, the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) Provincial Office for the Early Years provided funding for BCcampus to temporarily host, further develop and evaluate a professional development web solution over a three-year period. As part of this three-year project, key questions will be explored to inform the iterative design of the web solution and its role within the early years sector.

BCcampus, works on behalf of the Ministry of Advanced Education and the post-secondary education system in British Columbia, to collaborate with partners on systemic education and training projects that impact entire professions and sectors.

Notable Quotes

Professional isolation is an ongoing challenge for many who work in the early years sector. This research will foster more connections and support for those who seek and coordinate training opportunities.”-  Kathreen Riel, Project Manager and Researcher, Early Years Project

“The Professional Development Web Portal will increase access to and awareness of professional development opportunities, helping to build workforce capacity.” –  Emily Horton, Director, Project Management, Provincial Office for the Early Years

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