Exceeding guidance for Standard 7.2: Leadership


The following guidance is questions for services to ask of their own practice to consider whether their service Exceeds the NQS in Standard 7.2.

Authorised officers determine the rating of each Standard by considering each theme in relation to each Standard descriptor.
For further information on the three Exceeding themes, including what authorised officers consider when reviewing whether evidence demonstrates a theme, see Exceeding NQS theme guidance.
You can find case studies describing examples of practice for this Standard at https://www.acecqa.gov.au/assessment/exceeding-themes

Questions to guide reflection on practice for Standard 7.2

Exceeding theme 1: Practice is embedded in service operations

  • How do educators, the educational leader, and co-ordinators demonstrate a deep understanding of the requirements of the Standard, concepts and the component elements, and a commitment to high quality practice at all times?
  • Does effective leadership:
    • build and consistently promote a positive organisational culture and professional learning community that supports all members of the service team to develop as professionals and contribute meaningfully to quality improvement processes?
    • build educator capacity by supporting educators through ongoing professional development opportunities, such as mentoring?
  • How do all members of the service team:
    • explain how the service’s performance evaluation process consistently supports their learning and development goals and growth as professionals, including how a tailored professional development plan provides a focus for continuous performance improvement?
    • discuss and demonstrate how they actively participate in the service’s ongoing self-assessment and quality improvement process, and how this process drives continuous improvement in service quality and enhances outcomes for children and families?
  • How does the educational leader discuss and demonstrate how they are supported by the service’s leadership team, and work collaboratively with educators to effectively lead the development of the curriculum and set high expectations for teaching and learning?
  • How do educators discuss and demonstrate how they are supported by the educational leader to learn and grow in their professional practice, and how they work with the educational leader to consistently deliver an educational program that sets high expectations for each child’s learning?
  • Across the service, do observed and discussed quality improvement processes align with the service’s Quality Improvement Plan and with other supporting documentation, including individual professional development plans for staff members?

Exceeding theme 2: Practice is informed by critical reflection

  • How is the service’s approach to leadership:

    • reflective of robust debate, discussion, and opportunities for input by all educators, and informed by critical reflection and past incidents?
    • informed by current recognised guidance on leadership that supports the operation of a quality service?
  • Are any changes to the service’s approach to leadership understood by all and implemented appropriately?
  • How does the leadership team regularly reflect on the service’s quality improvement processes and make changes where opportunities are identified to enhance outcomes for the service team, children and families?

How are all members of the service team:

  • regularly reflecting on their own learning and professional development goals and opportunities to strengthen their performance and practice, and sharing their insights through informal and formal performance discussions to support alignment of expectations and goals?
  • systematically reflecting, individually and as a team, on service performance in relation to the National Quality Standard, focus areas identified in the Quality Improvement Plan, and goals for teaching and learning to ensure the service is meeting its own and the regulatory system’s expectations for high quality and continuous improvement?
  • How does the service support and enable all members of the service team to provide feedback on quality improvement processes and is this feedback respectfully considered?
  • Are change processes managed sensitively and collaboratively with key stakeholders and is the rationale for change is clearly communicated?

Exceeding theme 3: Practice is shaped by meaningful engagement with families and/or the community

  • How does leadership at the service:

    • reflect the unique geographical, cultural and community context of the service?
    • welcome, reflect and draw on the voices, priorities and strengths of the children and families at the service?
  • How do educators, co-ordinators and those with management responsibilities:
    • support families and the community to participate meaningfully in the service’s quality improvement processes, including the development and review of the Quality Improvement Plan?
    • support families and the community to understand the role of the educational leader in relation to their own child’s participation in the service, and regularly invite them to discuss their own goals and expectations for their child’s learning to inform the educational program?
  • In what ways does the service support and enable families and the community to provide feedback on quality improvement processes, and how is this feedback actively considered as part of the regular cycle of self-assessment that supports continuous quality improvement?
  • How does the service build and maintain community partnerships that strengthen the professional learning community and support continuous quality improvement, enhancing outcomes for children, families, and the service team?
  • Do quality improvement processes contribute to a culture of inclusiveness and a sense of belonging at the service, and suit the unique context of the service?
See the ACECQA Educational Leader Resource for information for educational leaders.
See ACECQA Self-assessment tool for information on conducting self-assessment.